A pressure sore (or bed sore) is an injury to the skin and underlying tissue. Sitting or lying in the same position for long periods of time will begin to cut off the flow of blood to that area, restricting oxygen and vital nutrients from maintaining healthy tissue. When the tissue becomes starved of oxygen for long periods, it begins to perish and a pressure sore starts to form. Taking pressure off the sore is the first step towards the healing process
Another type of pressure sore (shearing abrasion) can occur whilst pulling instead of lifting, across a surface. Damage from a pressure sore will range from slight discolouration of the skin (stage 1) to open sores that penetrate through the skin to the bone (severe). The affected area may feel warmer than the surrounding tissue. In lighter-skinned people the discolouration may appear dark purple or red. In darker-skinned people the discolouration will appear darker than the surrounding tissue.
A pressure sore is serious. It must not be ignored. With proper treatment, most pressure sores can be healed.
What to do!
Keep pressure off the sore.
Maintain good hygiene. Wash with mild soap and water, pat dry carefully. Do not rub vigorously over the wound. Review your mattress, wheelchair cushion, transfers and turning techniques for possible cause of the problem. Ultralife Healthcare can assist you with a pressure relieving mattress and cushions.
Contact the Ultralife Healthcare sales team to assist you with any further information you may need.