Pressure injuries can happen anywhere on the body where there is pressure or rubbing (commonly occurring over the bony area of the body. i.e. hips, buttocks, shoulders, elbows, knees …
What is a pressure injury? Pressure injuries are sometimes called bedsores or pressure ulcers. A pressure injury happens when you sit or lie on one spot too long. When you skin is pressed against bone the blood supply is cut off and damage to the skin and tissue occurs.
Who gets pressure injuries? You are at risk if you: Have already had a pressure injury. Sit in a wheelchair or lie in bed for a long time. Have lack of feeling from a spinal cord injury or stroke. Have poor circulation. Have problems with memory. Do not eat well. Do not change your sitting or lying position. Have fragile skin, swelling or bruising. Have wet skin from sweat, urine or stool. Are over or under weight.
What am I looking for? Check your skin every day. You may need a mirror or someone to help you. Look at areas where pressure injuries can form or where you have had a pressure injury. Look for areas that are red, bruised, blistered or open. Injured skin may feel hot, achy or itchy. Injured skin may feel swollen or tender. There may be fluid weeping from the injured skin.
What do I do if I think I have a pressure injury? The red, purple or maroon area, blister or break in the skin shows skin damage has occurred.
Do Not Ignore the injury, report it to your care team.
Try to stay off the area. Think about what may have caused the injury and fix or remove if possible.
Our Occupational Therapist is trained to help you with a plan to stop pressure injuries. They may: Show you special cushions, mattresses and other items you can use to decrease pressure. Hit make sure your wheel chair firs properly to decrease pressure points. They may even suggest better footwear.