Pressure ulcers/pressure sores are a frequently occurring health problem. They form a complication that often needs to be prevented among at-risk clients. Pressure ulcers are painful and reduce quality of life. Moreover, treatment involves high costs.
In the international guidelines of NPUAP/EPUAP/PPPIA (2014), a pressure ulcer is defined as ‘a localized injury to the skin and/or underlying tissue usually over a bony prominence, as a result of pressure, or pressure in combination with shear.’
Pressure ulcers are subdivided into categories, described by the international guidelines of the NPUAP/EPUAP/PPPIA (2014) as follows:
Category I: Non-blanchable erythema.
Intact skin with non-blanchable redness of a localized area usually over a bony prominence. Darkly pigmented skin may not have visible blanching; its color may differ from the surrounding area.
Category II: Partial thickness.
Partial thickness loss of dermis presenting as a shallow open ulcer with a red pink wound bed, without slough. May also present as an intact or open/ruptured serum-filled or sero-sanginous blister.