There are increasing reports of deaths and serious complications associated with the use of negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT). Bleeding may occur in patients when NPWT is applied to a wound with exposed blood vessels or vascular grafts, possibly due to mechanical deformation and hypoperfusion of the vessel walls. Recent evidence suggests that using a rigid barrier disc to protect underlying tissue can prevent this mechanical deformation. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of rigid discs on the tissue exposed to negative pressure with regard to tissue pressure and microvascular blood flow. Peripheral wounds were created on the backs of eight pigs. The pressure and microvascular blood flow in the wound bed were measured when NPWT was applied. The wound was filled with foam, and rigid discs of different designs were inserted between the wound bed and the foam. The discs were created with or without channels (to accommodate exposed sensitive structures such as blood vessels and nerves), perforations, or a porous dressing that covered the underside of the discs (to facilitate pressure transduction and fluid evacuation). When comparing the results for pressure transduction to the wound bed, no significant differences were found using different discs covered with dressing, whereas pressure transduction was lower with bare discs. Microvascular blood flow in the wound bed decreased by 49 ± 7% when NPWT was applied to control wounds. The reduction in blood flow was less in the presence of a protective disc (e.g., -6 ± 5% for a dressing-covered, perforated disc, p = 0.006). In conclusion, NPWT causes hypoperfusion of superficial tissue in the wound bed. The insertion of a rigid barrier counteracts this effect. The placement of a rigid disc over exposed blood vessels or nerves may protect these structures from rupture and damage.