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By: Karen Bauer, NP-C, CWS

How often should ankle-brachial indexes (ABIs) be repeated? If someone has a stage 3 pressure injury to the top of the foot, should compression be held on that extremity?

The Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nursing Society guidelines suggest ABIs every 3 months routinely, while the Society for Vascular Surgery guidelines recommend that post endovascular repair, ABIs are done at 6 and 12 months (then yearly). For open revascularization, surveillance studies can be at 3, 6, and 12 months. Ultimately, many factors play into this. If the ulcer is closing and the limb remains stable, you might forgo frequent ABIs, but if the ulcer is not closing, or the patient has new or persistent ischemic symptoms, you should check ABIs more frequently. As far as compression with a dorsal foot pressure injury is concerned, as long as arterial status has been ascertained, compression can be utilized. The original source of pressure should be removed (shoe? ankle-foot orthotic?). If there is a venous component, cautious compression will aid in ulcer resolution.

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By: Mary Brennan, RN, MBA, CWON, Karen Lou Kennedy-Evans, RN, FNP, APRN-BC, and Diane Krasner, PhD, RN, CWCN, CWS, MAPWCA, FAAN

What is the best way to differentiate between a Trombley-Brennan terminal tissue injury (TB-TTI) and deep tissue injury (DTI)?

Mary: This is the most challenging because these injuries resemble one another. The difference is that a TB-TTI does not evolve as a DTI does. There may be an increase in surface area but no change in the appearance or type of tissue. A TB-TTI will look the same in color and appearance on day 3 or 5 as it does on day 1.

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By Michel H.E. Hermans, MD

How should I treat a patient with a partial-thickness burn on less than 10% of their body but poor vascularity?

It is not possible to give a specific answer to this question because burns larger than 10% could be anywhere from 11% to 99%. As mentioned in the presentation, larger burns cause burn disease with all its potential complications. “Poor vascularity” is a bit vague. If it is the result of diabetes, then the disease itself, including the typical microvascular problems, will contribute to poorer healing. On the other hand, peripheral arterial disease usually does not have a significant impact on the healing of partial-thickness burns unless occlusion is very severe.

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By: Dianne Rudolph, DNP, GNP-BC, CWOCN

What are some ways to achieve insurance coverage for fistula pouches or to use ostomy supplies for a fistula? We often run into the issue of supplies not being covered for Medicare or Medicaid patients.

Unfortunately, coverage is inadequate. CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) coverage for fistulas is limited for fistulas caused by or resulting from a surgical procedure, and even then, it may be difficult to get reimbursed. Spontaneous fistulas (15% to 25%) are generally not covered. The Wound, Ostomy and Continence Society is working on trying to effect a change in coverage. Some insurance companies may be more amenable to reimbursement, and it may require a case-by-case application or appeal. For patients being discharged home, it may be possible to secure a short-term supply of 10 to 14 days. The cost for the pouches may run $255 and up for a box of 10.

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By: Marta Ostler, PT, CWS, CLT, DAPWCA, and Janet Wolfson, PT, CLWT, CWS, CLT-LANA

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By Catherine T. Milne, APRN, MSN, ANP/ACNS-BC, CWOCN-AP and Jayesh Shah, MD, MHA

We are pleased to announce that registration for WoundCon Fall 2020 is now open to all licensed health care professionals at www.WoundCon.com. WoundCon Fall 2020 will be held on November 13, 2020 from 8AM to 6:30PM US EST and will offer up to 13.5* hours of CE/CME credit.

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By Samantha Kuplicki, MSN, APRN-CNS, AGCNS-BC, CWCN-AP, CWS, RNFA

Should pain management interventions be put in place before debriding a venous ulcer?

Without question, yes. Any comprehensive wound treatment plan must include a thorough pain assessment, accounting for cyclical and non-cyclical pain sources. This will best guide interventions based on patient’s unique history, which can potentially include complicating factors such as complex personal pain management secondary to chronic pain, inability to tolerate specific interventions because of existing comorbid conditions, limited financial or social resources, etc. Multimodal pain management is standard of care, using the least invasive options and beginning pharmacologic therapy with the lowest necessary dosage possible.

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By Thomas E. Serena, MD, and Khristina Harrell, RN

With apologies to Nietzsche: "What kills you makes you dead." The slow painful death of large and expensive in-person conferences has begun. Technological evolution has selected against these lumbering dinosaurs, but, rather than a massive asteroid, the parlous event came as a microscopic virus. Lockdowns and social distancing enacted in response to COVID-19 pushed us all deeper into a virtual world, a world that will persist long after COVID resolves.

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