Qcf Level 2 Unit 229

Unit 229
Pressure Area Care

Pressure ulcers, also known as bed sores or pressure sores are injuries of the skin and underlying tissue. They appear when the affected area of skin is under too much pressure. Due to the pressure the blood flow is disrupted, the area does not irrigate, therefore nutrients and oxygen do not reach the skin cells. The skin then breaks and pressure ulcers form.

The parts of the body most at risk of developing pressure ulcers are in direct contact with a supporting surface, such as a bed or a wheelchair. These might be:
  * Shoulders or shoulder blades
  * Elbows
  * Back of the head
  * Rims of ears
  * Knees, ankles, heels or toes
  * Spine
  * Tail bone (the small bone at the bottom of the spine)

Some of the factors that can put an individual at risk of developing pressure sores are:
  * Poor nutrition or hydration
  * A health condition that limits the blood supply(diabetes and peripheral arterial disease) making the skin vulnerable to bruising and damage
  * Poor mobility
  * Age
  * Urine or bowel incontinence

By using incorrect moving and handling techniques one might put residents at risk. This can happen when residents are moved into:
  * Chairs- they may be unable to get out of it .The seat surface, covering or padding may cause uneven distribution
  * Wheelchairs which may be ill-fitting, causing pressure. Skin may be damaged on contact with protrusions such as footplates.
  * Beds Confinement to bed can make the resident unable to alter position in bed.
  * When using glide sheets, this can make Skin contact when the sheet is placed, fabric may crumple against skin, feet and/or arms may be dragged as buttocks move.

Interventions that can reduce the risk of skin from breaking down and pressure sores are:
    • Regular pressure relief
    • Visual skin inspection ( morning and evening )
    • Adequate pressure care equipment
    • Safe and efficient transfers
    • Maintaining clean and dry skin.