Decubitus or pressure ulcers are a painful condition that affects many people every year, especially the older part of the population. The reason for this is primarily a restriction of movement capacity. We want to focus on this issue in the pages to follow. The factors that cause the pressure ulcers can be divided into internal and external factors. However, it is often a combination of both that causes the pressure ulcers. By paying more attention to this issue, we hope to reduce the number of pressure ulcers.
Pressure ulcers can occur in all parts of the body, but some points are more prone than others. Areas with little adipose tissue between the bone and skin are particularly at risk. Experience has shown that the following areas are particularly exposed to pressure ulcers:
- Sitting bones
- Outside of the hip
- Sacral bone
- Back of the head and ears
- Shoulder blades
In order to reduce the pressure and prevent pressure ulcers, the pressure on the exposed areas must be reduced. For wheelchair users, particularly the sitting bones are exposed.
Distribution of weight over the largest possible area
Extensive relief of exposed areas – particularly of the sitting bones
Reduction of misalignment
It is extremely important that the user sinks into the cushion This must therefore have an underlying softness and thickness, so that the sitting bones can sink in and always have pressure-relieving material under them. For this reason, all our cushions are at least 8 cm thick with a high load capacity.
The risk of pressure ulcers is reduced if one seeks to create the normal temperature and moisture conditions on the user's skin (microclimate control).Since passive users cannot significantly change their position, it is very important that fabrics can breathe when in contact with the body. Increased ventilation helps the skin to keep its elasticity and resistance, and the user can sit dry and comfortably.
Studies of the EPUAP (European Pressure Ulcers Advisory Panel) come to the conclusion that skin properties are retained the best at 28-32°C. Already at 35°C, the resistance of the skin is weakened due to effects such as pressure, and the risk of pressure ulcers increased.
- Incontinence – incontinence covers are often not breathable and retain heat and moisture.
- Cover – use breathable fabrics
- Clothing – do not use cotton as it is not very breathable
- Vary sitting position – introduce meaningful routines
Our covers are made from highly breathable fabrics with a high degree of ventilation. We use the 3D fabric made from 100% polyester as standard.
In our products Temp °C and ClimaTherm, the microclimatic properties are improved by the addition of PCM (Phase Change Material) for temperature stabilisation on the surface. This delays the increase of temperature that weaken the resistance and elastic properties of the skin and underlying tissue.
Change the sitting position
Therefore, users at risk of pressure ulcers must frequently change their sitting position. If they cannot do it themselves or even express the desire to change position, family members and nursing staff must do it for them.
It is important to familiarise yourself with the tools and the wheelchair in order to use it to actively reduce and change pressure.
Courses and seminars
Our qualified occupational therapists and instructors run courses and seminars both locally and abroad on topics such as wheelchairs, sitting position, pressure ulcers, etc.
For more information on our courses and seminars, please do not hesitate to contact us.