Seeking a Proper FitBy Kirkner, Amy; Dworak, Patti; Rehab Management,
Publication Date: October 2008
Article discusses the prevention of pressure sores in people who spend extended time in wheelchairs, such as individuals with spinal cord injuries (SCI). According to the article, an estimated 80 percent of individuals with SCI will have a pressure sore during their lifetime. Pressure sores are defined as areas of damaged skin and tissue that develop as a result of sustained pressure on various susceptible parts of the body, cutting off blood circulation to areas such as the lower back, buttocks, shoulder blades, and the backs of arms and legs. Advice offered for the prevention of pressure sores includes: (1) Ensuring that the individual’s initial wheelchair fitting is done correctly, including a supportive headrest, pressure-relieving seat cushions, and proper padding and support for trunk and legs; (2) Use of a pressure mapping system to identify potential problems. The system consists of a thin mat that is placed on top of the wheelchair seat cushion and hooked up to a computer with software that allows therapists to see how much pressure is being applied to various areas of the patient’s body; and (3) Proper medical coverage and funding to ensure provision of the correct equipment needed to prevent pressure sores.
Published by: Ascend Media LLC (Website:http://www.ascendmedia.com)
Link to text: http://www.rehabpub.com/issues/articles/2008-10_01.asp