Decubitus injuries are common problems in bedridden patients. Immobility, in fact, causes a reduction in blood circulation pression sothat the transit of oxygen and nutrients is limited and, over time, this condition leads to death of tissues, with consequent appearance of sores.
Scapulae, coccyx, elbows, heels, hips constitute the liable areas, those to which greater attention must be paid.
In case of injuries of this type, there are no specific and / or optimal solutions yet, so that prevention is extremely important.
In this sense, the caregiver, can supply by:
– Keeping skin dry and clean. Daily hygiene care is fundamental in order to maintain skin undamaged. It has to be cleansed and dried in regular pauses; cleaning operations should be carried out using warm water and neutral emollient and soothing detergents, that guarantee a correct degree of hydration; drying should be gentle (dabbing carefully, avoiding vigorous frictions) especially near bony prominences, in order to avoid possible damages to capillaries.
– Changing position often. The frequent change of body position improves blood circulation. It would be ideal every two hours, in order to reduce pressure on particular areas of the body. Furthermore, patient must be stimulated to perform small movements (e.g. alternating arms lifting for few seconds).
– Placing cushions under particular frail areas can help to avoid the compression of those areas. According to the National Institute of Health (NIH) it is advisable to use cushions under coccyxes, shoulders, heels and elbows.