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Prevention Protocol for Pressure Ulcers

The topic area of this study is the prevention and management of pressure ulcers. Pressure ulcers are skin injuries, which can bleed or produce a poisonous substance. These sore areas usually appear in bony spots such as hips, tailbone, ankles, and heels. Symptoms of pressure ulcers include changes in skin color, temperature, and swelling. Emergency departments have special protocols detailing the preventative measures and treatment for patients with such injuries.

The subject of this study is the development of pressure ulcers. The problem is that older people have a high risk of developing pressure ulcers. Blood flow obstruction, precipitated by long periods of immobility and poor hydration, can lead to excessive pressure on the skin, ultimately damaging it. The population of this study incorporates people older than 60 years who are likely to have risk factors for pressure ulcers. The subsequent thesis is: that the implementation of an appropriate pressure ulcer protocol may reduce the risk of getting these lesions within three days.

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The most common way of developing a pressure ulcer is by applying too much static pressure on a certain part of the body without changing the point of pressure. Most of these processes happen while a patient is either sitting or lying for an extended period of time (Baron et al., 2016). Older people have a higher risk of developing a pressure ulcer since their overall mobility is limited. Subsequently, blood flow does not reach pressured areas, which results in a lesion (Kwong et al., 2016). The goal is to create a protocol in a hospital emergency department that would relieve patients of sore areas developing into pressure ulcers within three days.

The reason why this topic is worthy of note lies in the apparent easiness of preventing pressure ulcers. If lesions occur after the obstruction of blood flow, it may be possible to resolve this issue without any medical assistance by simply changing the lying position so that bone pressure would shift to another area. However, in most cases, patients report pain only after a pressure ulcer has developed (Baron et al., 2016). This means that it is too late for preventative measures. Therefore, a protocol should be written that would specifically pinpoint risk factors and ways of managing them, as, under normal circumstances, it is easy to miss the warning signs.

Accomplishing this goal would empower nursing staff with the knowledge of pressure ulcer risk factors. When delivering care to older patients, medical personnel focus on the most immediate issues, for instance, spinal cord injuries. However, the treatment for such traumas is immobility, which is the primary risk factor (Kwong et al., 2016). Exploring this issue would raise awareness of such complications and prevent many older patients from blood flow obstructions.

The target population incorporates nurses who gain knowledge and the old patients who are relieved of the risk of struggling with a pressure ulcer. Nurses benefit because they learn to spot warning signs before patients start feeling pain. In their turn, older people will be able to spend a long time lying without the risk of developing a pressure ulcer. Both these groups will be prime beneficiaries of the implementation of the preventative protocol.

Altogether, it should be evident that treatment that necessitates prolonged immobility may result in skin injuries. They happen due to the lack of attention drawn to sufficient blood flow and distribution of bone pressure. Once the protocol for preventing pressure ulcers is implemented, both the medical personnel and the older patient will experience improvement since no unexpected injuries will appear due to a long time spent lying.

References

Baron, J., Swaine, J., Presseau, J., Aspinall, A., Jaglal, S., White, B., Wolfe, D., & Grimshaw, J. (2016). Self-management interventions to improve skin care for pressure ulcer prevention in people with spinal cord injuries: A systematic review protocol. Systematic Reviews5(1), 150−158. Web.

Kwong, E. W., Hung, M. S., & Woo, K. (2016). Improvement of pressure ulcer prevention care in private for-profit residential care homes: An action research study. BMC Geriatrics16(1), 1−14. Web.