Pressure Ulcers Essay

1938 Words Jul 15th, 2011 8 Pages
Foundations of Professional Nursing
Assignment 1: Written Essay 1500-2000 words
Topic: “Pressure ulcers are debilitating for the client and yet they are largely preventable”.

Word count from Introduction to Conclusion: 1520


This paper will discuss how pressure ulcers are essentially a serious problem within healthcare settings and how prevention is accountable in the development in pressure ulcers. The paper explores various ways to prevent pressure ulcers, reducing the risk factors, the responsibility of the duty of care of patients and the use of risk assessment tools. In order to prevent pressure ulcers, remove the risk. Evidence for this paper was gathered from seven peer reviewed journal articles from the
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This can be seen in the research undertaken by Sayer et al. (2008). It was decided to use the Waterlow scale as they found it fitted their expectation for sensitivity and specificity across different patient groups and it was fundamental to their study. However, Ayello & Brandon (2002) decided to focus their article on the Branden Scale because it was most appropriate for their study.

The Waterlow Risk Assessment tool, as cited on the QLD Health website (2003) (see appendix 1), is commonly used within Queensland hospitals as it is promptly available as a laminated pocket sized card for a quick reference (Australian Wound Management Association 2001). It encompasses several categories such as: continence, build/height, skin integrity, gender/age, appetite, mobility, and special risks such as: tissue malnutrition, neurological deficit, surgery or trauma and medication. Each category is assessed and the appropriate score is achieved. The total score is added up and the higher the score the greater the risk. 10+ is “high risk” and 20+ is “very high risk” (Carville 2005). Once a particular sensitivity score is achieved, clinical and professional judgement is used by the nurse to accurately decide what preventable actions are required to prevent the development

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