Bedridden and wheelchair-bound patients may benefit from nutrition therapy to promote pressure ulcer healing.
Pressure ulcers are an issue of great concern among people who undergo long-term stays in clinical settings. These painful complications, which can become deadly in the case of wound infections, affect about 2.5 million patients every year and cost as much as $11.6 billion in health care costs annually, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
That’s why researchers are continually seeking out new and innovative methods for helping people more quickly and safely recover from these localized injuries, and now researchers from Italy have discovered a relatively simple way to enhance wound healing in pressure ulcers: nutrition therapy.
The Chino Valley Medical Center now requires some patients to wear devices that reduce the prevalence of pressure ulcers.
Pressure ulcers – broken down skin caused by continuous pressure or rubbing – are extremely painful and can be dangerous to patient health, even resulting in death without proper wound care. They also have great financial damages; the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality reported that pressure ulcers cost between $9.1 and $11.6 billion every year, and each one adds on average more than $43,000 to the expense of a hospital stay. To address this issue, one California hospital has begun requiring that certain long-term care patients use a monitoring device to reduce risk of these wounds.
Intact eschar on the heels should not be removed.
Current standard of care guidelines recommend that stable intact (dry, adherent, intact without erythema or fluctuance) eschar on the heels should not be removed. Blood flow in the tissue under the eschar is poor and the wound is susceptible to infection. The eschar acts as a natural barrier to infection by keeping the bacteria from entering the wound.
Examining your skin while receiving wound care is a beneficial way to prevent pressure ulcers.
A breakdown of skin that is a relatively common side effect for those facing extended periods of immobility, pressure ulcers are a highly unpleasant reaction that is often a component to the wound care process. Whether it’s staying in a hospital bed after surgery or spending weeks in a wheelchair with a broken leg, pressure ulcers thrive when someone’s mobility is limited. This is due to the constant force against the skin that dramatically reduces blood flow resulting in underlying skin tissue damage. Pressure ulcers are usually discovered in adults, but a study focusing on how an unusual number of these bedsores spotted on children could indicate faulty medical devices in children’s hospitals.
Poor blood circulation is a common indicator of venous ulcers.
When it comes to preventative wound care, taking the necessary precautions to avoid all types of visible ulcers is crucial. There are essentially three main types of ulcers that can accumulate in a variety of ways, which is why being aware of what causes each one will help eliminate your risk of ulcer development. Here is a general guideline that looks at what causes each type, how they can progress and preventative measures you can take to ensure your body stays ulcer-free: