Bed sores occur when a person is bedridden or unable to move, lose consciousness, or feel pain. Bed sores are ulcers that develop on areas of the skin that have been under pressure from lying in bed, sitting in a wheelchair, or wearing a cast for long periods of time. Bed sores are also called pressure wounds, bedsores, pressure ulcers, or bedsores.
Bed sores can be a serious problem in frail older adults. They may be related to the quality of care a patient receives. If a person who is immobile or bedridden does not turn around, is not positioned correctly, and is not given good nutrition and skin care, bedsores can develop. People with diabetes, circulation problems, and malnutrition are at higher risk.
What causes bedsores?
Bed sores occur when the blood supply to the skin is cut off for more than 2 to 3 hours. As the skin dies, a bedsore begins as a red, painful area that eventually turns purple. If left untreated, the skin may break and the area may become infected.
Bed sores can become deep. It can extend to muscles and bones. Once bedsores develop, healing is usually very slow. Depending on the severity of the sore, the condition of the person, and the presence of other medical conditions (such as diabetes), it can take days, months, or even years to heal. They may need surgery to help the healing process.
often occur when:
Hip area (coccyx or buttocks)
The back of the head
Back and sides of the knee
What are the risk factors for bedsores?
Being bedridden, unconscious, unable to feel pain, or unable to move can increase the risk of pressure ulcers. The risk increases if a person is not turned, positioned correctly, or provided with proper nutrition and skin care. People with diabetes, circulation problems and malnutrition are at higher risk.
What are the symptoms of bedsores?
There are 4 stages of bedsores, from least severe to most severe. these are:
Stage 1. This area is red and warm to the touch. For darker skin, the area may have a bluish or purple tint. The person may also complain of burning, pain, or itching.
Phase 2. The area looks more damaged and may have open sores, abrasions, or blisters. The person complains of significant pain, and the skin around the wound may be discolored.
Phase 3. The area has a crater-like appearance due to damage below the skin's surface.
Phase 4. The area is severely damaged and there is a large wound. Muscles, tendons, bones, and joints may be involved. Infection is a significant risk at this stage.
Wounds were not assigned a stage when there was full-thickness tissue loss and the base of the ulcer was covered with slough or eschar was found in the wound bed. Carrion may be tan, gray, green, brown or yellow in color. Eschar is usually tan, brown or black.
How are bedsores diagnosed?
Healthcare providers diagnose bedsores by examining the skin of a person at risk of developing bedsores. They are staged based on their appearance.
How are bedsores treated?
Your healthcare provider and wound care team will discuss specific treatments for pressure ulcers with you, depending on the severity of your condition. Once the skin is broken, treatment can be more difficult and may include the following:
Reduces pressure on the affected area
Medicated gauze or other special dressing to protect the wound
Keep the wound clean
Ensure good nutrition
Removal of damaged, infected or dead tissue (debridement)
Transplanting healthy skin into the wound area (skin grafting)
Negative pressure wound therapy
Medication (such as antibiotics to treat infections)
A healthcare professional will pay close attention to bedsores. They will record size, depth and response to treatment
What are the complications of bedsores?
Once a bedsore develops, it can take days, months, or even years to heal. It can also become infected, causing fever and chills. Infected bedsores can take a long time to clear. As the infection spreads through your body, it can also cause confusion, rapid heartbeat, and general weakness.
Can bedsores be prevented?
Checking the skin daily for redness (the first sign of broken skin), paying special attention to the bony area, can prevent bedsores. Other ways to prevent bedsores and prevent existing sores from getting worse include:
Turn and reposition every 2 hours
Sit upright in the wheelchair and change positions every 15 minutes
Provide upholstery in wheelchairs and beds to reduce stress
Provides good skin care by keeping the skin clean and dry
Provides good nutrition, because without enough calories, vitamins, minerals, fluids and protein, bedsores will not heal, no matter how well you take care of the ulcer
Key points about bedsores
A bedsore is an ulcer that occurs on an area of the skin that is under pressure from lying in bed, sitting in a wheelchair, and/or wearing a cast for long periods of time.
Bedsores occur when a person is bedridden, unconscious, unable to feel pain, or unable to move.
Check the skin daily for redness (the first sign of broken skin), paying special attention to the bony area, which can prevent bedsores.