Preventing pressure injuries
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What can be done to prevent pressure injuries or pressure ulcers occurring when you are unwell or in hospital
Pressure ulcers are also called bed sores or pressure injuries.
They can happen very quickly if you are unwell or not able to move easily. Any form of pressure or friction (even rubbing) can cause skin damage, particularly if your skin is moist or if you suffer from poor circulation or poor sensation in your skin.
Look for: red areas; blistered or bruised-looking areas; shiny areas; warm or hard patches; or broken or cracked skin.
Look at: your whole body, but particularly bony areas such as heels, bottom and elbows; between skin folds; and under plaster, dressings, splints or tubes.
This is a picture of the early stage of a pressure injury on a heel. It is a red mark, that doesn’t fade in a few minutes.
The Nurses and Doctors will check your skin regularly for any sore or red areas. It is best if they look at your skin. Dietitians, Podiatrists, Occupational Therapists and Physiotherapists can also provide advice, equipment and assistance.
Together, you can plan what needs to be done to protect your skin from pressure ulcers.
SA Health has a Pressure injury Prevention and Management Guideline and Toolkit to support clinicians in avoiding and dealing with pressure injuries.
Safety and Quality
Telephone: (08) 8226 9599