On 3 March 2015, American College of Physicians came out with Clinical Practice Guideline on Risk Assessment and Prevention of Pressure Ulcers. The major recommendations of the guidelines are as follows:-
Recommendation 1: American College of Physicians (ACP) recommends that clinicians should perform a risk assessment to identify patients who are at risk of developing pressure ulcers. (Grade: weak recommendation, low-quality evidence)
Risk assessment is often part of bundled care and multicomponent interventions for preventing pressure ulcers. Risk factors for pressure ulcers include older age; black race or Hispanic ethnicity; lower body weight; cognitive impairment; physical impairments; and other comorbid conditions that affect soft tissue integrity and healing, such as urinary or fecal incontinence, diabetes, edema, impaired microcirculation, hypoalbuminemia, and malnutrition. Clinicians should make individualized decisions based on risk assessment on whether to use a single or multicomponent intervention to prevent pressure ulcers in patients.
The current evidence does not conclusively show a difference between clinical judgment and risk assessment scales in reducing pressure ulcer incidence. However, tools may be especially useful for clinicians without expert gestalt. Moderate-quality evidence showed that the Braden, Cubbin and Jackson, Norton, and Waterlow scales can predict which patients are more likely to develop a pressure ulcer, and all of these instruments have low sensitivity and specificity. In addition, moderate-quality evidence showed that the diagnostic accuracies of the scales do not differ substantially. No study evaluated the effectiveness of risk assessment tools across care settings or patient subgroups.
Recommendation 2: ACP recommends that clinicians should choose advanced static mattresses or advanced static overlays in patients who are at an increased risk of developing pressure ulcers. (Grade: strong recommendation, moderate-quality evidence)
Moderate-quality evidence showed that the use of advanced static mattresses or overlays was associated with a lower risk for pressure ulcers compared with standard hospital mattresses, and no brand was shown to be superior. Advanced static mattresses and overlays are also less expensive than alternating-air or low–air-loss mattresses and can be used as part of a multicomponent approach to pressure ulcer prevention.
Recommendation 3: ACP recommends against using alternating-air mattresses or alternating-air overlays in patients who are at an increased risk of developing pressure ulcers. (Grade: weak recommendation, moderate-quality evidence)
The current evidence does not show a clear benefit for pressure ulcer prevention using alternating-air beds and overlays compared with static mattresses and overlays, and alternating-air beds and overlays are associated with significantly higher costs. Lower-cost support surfaces should be the preferred approach to care.
For full guideline click on the following link:
Artical Source: Qaseem A, Mir TP, Starkey M, Denberg TD, Clinical Guidelines Committee of the American College of Physicians. Risk assessment and prevention of pressure ulcers: a clinical practice guideline from the American College of Physicians. Ann Intern Med. 2015 Mar 3;162(5):359-69. [120 references] PubMed
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