Evidence Based

ce to Inform Nursing Practice

and patient values. Of particular interest to the author of this document is the use of constant low pressure mattresses (CLP) or alternate pressure (AP) and the need to ascertain whether these are more beneficial than standard foam mattresses; while also identifying the advantages & disadvantages of their use.

Pressure sore prevention is an important element of care of critically ill patients. According to NICE (2005) an estimated 4-10% of patients admitted to acute wards develop a pressure ulcer. Pressure ulcers are a major cause of illness, reduced quality of life and morbidity. They are also associated with a 2-4 fold increase in risk of death in older people in intensive care and also have substantial financial costs. Cullum et al (2000) defines pressure sores as areas of localised damage to the The aim of this essay is to discuss a clinical issue identified on a placement and how it ties in with research, providing evidence that informs practice; otherwise known as evidence based practice. Sackett et al (1997) defines the former as the conscientious, explicit and judicious use of current best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients. As stipulated by the NMC (2008) and also the Caldicotte Report, confidentiality will be maintained throughout this document, thus there will be no mention of names of hospital, ward, staff or patients. The focus patient group of this essay will be adults admitted to medical wards, particularly within the complex care and high dependency units; who due to the nature of their illnesses are immobile or bed ridden. The patients in question are deemed to be at greater risk of developing pressure or bed sores, also termed pressure or decubitus ulcers. Hence the need to utilise interventions that prevent/reduce the risk of damage to the skin, as well as allow skin that is already damaged/broken to heal speedily. In that regard evidence based practice is thus an important...