How to prevent pressure ulcers 

Pressure ulcers can develop quickly and may cause pain, or mean a longer stay in hospital. They can damage deeper layers of tissue beneath the skin so they can take a long time to heal. Therefore, at UCLH to help prevent pressure ulcers we use the SSKIN care bundle that identifies five key aspects of pressure area care. Working  together we will agree what your care will be.

SSKIN stands for:

Skin Assessment
Surface
Keep moving
Incontinence
Nutrition

Skin Assessment

Your skin will be assessed regularly to check for signs of pressure ulcer development. How often your skin is checked depends on your level of risk.

Surface

We use two types of mattress. We will discuss with you which one best suits your  needs.

Keep moving

One of the best ways of preventing a pressure ulcer is to change your position regularly.

If you have reduced movement because you are in pain, the nursing team will offer you painkillers and help you to change your position. We will advise you on how  pressure is best reduced or relieved including advice on:

  • Correct sitting and lying positions
  • How to adjust your position
  • How often you need to move or be moved
  • Supporting your feet

Incontinence

It is important your skin is kept clean and dry.
Skin that is damp is at risk of damage. This
may be due to:

  • Incontinence
  • Sweating
  • A weeping wound

Nutrition

Eating well and drinking enough water is very important. We will discuss your diet with you and offer extra snacks, supplements and refer you to a dietician if needed.

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