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Prophylactic dressings

Prophylactic dressings worn on high-risk areas are a key aspect of prevention protocols. An international clinical practice guideline    now recommends to consider applying a polyurethane foam dressing to high-risk areas for the prevention of pressure ulcers.

The results of several studies, including randomised controlled trials, show that these dressings are effective in preventing sacrum and heel pressure ulcers   . They help to combat the four extrinsic factors that contribute to pressure ulcers – by reducing shear, redistributing pressure, reducing friction and by maintaining an optimal microclimate       .

Turning and positioning systems

Patient repositioning is an important aspect of prevention protocols   . Several options are available to protect the head, sacrum and heel by holding the patient in position and redistributing pressure away from stress points, e.g.:

  • turning and positioning systems that make it easy for hospital staff to move their patients, reduce the physical effort required and reduce the risk of staff injuries   
  • fluidised positioners that are easily moulded to any shape and will hold the patient in the required position until the next scheduled repositioning   
  • heel boots designed specifically for positioning the high-risk heel area   

Skin care products

Skin care products play an important role in preventing pressure ulcers, e.g.:

  • Skin cleansers to keep the skin clean
  • Barrier® products to protect the skin from exposure to excessive moisture and chemical irritants in urine and faeces
  • Moisturisers to hydrate dry skin   

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