Skin Care

WoundSource Practice Accelerator's picture

by the WoundSource Editors

Those working with at-risk populations must be aware of how to address the skin care needs of our patients and prevent pressure ulcers and injuries. At-risk populations, such as older adults, persons who are incontinent, pediatric patients, immobile patients, post-operative patients, and those with chronic disease processes and spinal injuries, for example, are most at risk for developing pressure ulcers. Those patients who have comorbidities such as obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease are at additional risk.

WoundSource Practice Accelerator's picture

by the WoundSource Editors

Periwound skin management is just as important as wound bed preparation in wound healing. The goal of periwound management is to maintain an optimal moist wound healing environment while preventing skin breakdown and infection. Skin is more vulnerable in patients with certain comorbidities and conditions. Periwound skin breakdown is just one of the culprits that delay wound healing and increase pain. It is important to identify conditions and risk factors early in your wound assessment to help prevent any risk of wound progress declination.

WoundSource Practice Accelerator's picture

by the WoundSource Editors

The skin is the largest organ of our body, covering 18 square feet and weighing approximately 12 pounds. Despite positive characteristics, the skin is always susceptible to and at risk of injury and breakdown. Maintaining skin integrity equals maintaining skin health, and this includes people of any age. Older adults are at a higher risk because of the skin aging process. As skin ages, the junction between the epidermis and dermis thins and flattens, reducing circulation. Moisturizing factors in older adults also reduce, thus causing dry, flaky skin and increased risk of skin breakdown.

Fabiola Jimenez's picture
Education

By Fabiola Jimenez, RN, ACNS-BC, CWOCN

I recently celebrated 30 years in nursing and completed my fourth year as a certified wound, ostomy and continence nurse. Since I took my current position in November of 2014, I have conducted Annual Skin Care Skin Fairs, usually in the fall. In the spring, to coincide with Nurses' Week, I join the hospital nursing educator and host the mandatory equipment fair where the staff is required to put hands on the various equipment we use in patient care. Twice a month during nursing orientation I present the products used for skin care, basics of wound care, and ostomy care. The staff is encouraged to return during subsequent months during new staff orientation and reinforce skills with which they do not feel comfortable.

Blog Category: 
Ivy Razmus's picture
Product Selection

by Ivy Razmus, RN, PhD, CWOCN

As we continually focus on improving our skills in prevention and management of skin and wounds, we are beginning to understand that one size does not fit all; or, in other words, prevention and management in wound care are dependent on the size and age of the patient. In wound care, one method of care does not fit all types of patients. Although those clinicians who work with younger populations know this to be true based on our personal experience, this can be a problem if the purchasing of products for younger patients' skin and wound care is decided without the input of the providers and caregivers who care for them.

Blog Category: 
WoundSource Practice Accelerator's picture
Venous Leg Ulcer Complications

by the WoundSource Editors

Venous leg ulcers (VLUs) are difficult to treat, and when they are present a variety of complications may arise. These complications can be challenging to treat and may often contribute to the prolonged healing times resulting from chronicity found with many VLUs. Further, if the condition of the ulcer deteriorates, it may worsen any complication already present or serve as the catalyst for the development of complications.

Blog Category: 
Heidi Cross's picture
Skin Changes at Life's End

by Heidi H. Cross, MSN, RN, FNP-BC, CWON

"If a patient is cold, if a patient is feverish, if a patient is faint, if he is sick after taking food, if he has a bed sore, it is generally the fault not of the disease, but of the nursing." —Florence Nightingale

Ouch! What an indictment of nursing and, by extension, the facility in which the nurse works. We have a lot to thank Florence Nightingale for—a brilliant woman considered to be the founder of nursing and nursing standards and the first to ever put statistics to health care, among other valuable contributions.

Holly Hovan's picture
Skin Tear Protocol

Holly M. Hovan MSN, APRN, ACNS-BC, CWOCN-AP

Payne and Martin brought skin tears to the attention of wound and skin specialists and to the wound care community when they reported an incidence rate of 2.23% in individuals aged 55 years and older, living in a long-term care facility. A skin tear is "a wound caused by shear, friction, and/or blunt force resulting in a separation of skin layers." Skin tears may be partial- or full-thickness wounds, develop into chronic wounds without proper treatment and follow-up, and, most importantly, are preventable.

Margaret Heale's picture
Home Health Nurse

By Margaret Heale, RN, MSc, CWOCN

"Must Love Dogs (Cats, Lizards, Snakes, Birds, AND Arachnids)." This is a line that needs to be next to all job advertisements for home health care staff. You see, I am a dog lover, not because I love dogs but because I have a way of being able to adapt in order to survive. I work in home care as a clinical nurse specialist and have slowly learned to love dogs ever since I was reported to my manager for mentioning I didn't like them much. Shortly after this I was told not to visit a patient whose cat I had shooed away from my wound dressing field. While discussing this with a colleague, she told me of the bird that had landed on her head that morning just as she was probing the patient's foot wound with a Q-tip. Maybe everybody has had experiences like mine, but maybe not, so I would like to put mine to paper to entertain you in this season of good cheer.

Emily Greenstein's picture
Wound Care

by Emily Greenstein, APRN, CNP, CWON, FACCWS

"When I grow up, I want to be a wound care specialist." That's not something you hear kids going around saying. Sure, kids want to be doctors or nurses. But wound care specialist?

When you think about it, being a wound specialist is not a glamorous position, unlike being a neurosurgeon. The best quote that I ever heard from a colleague of mine was, "No one wants to do wound care; wound care isn't sexy." This may be true, but what is wound care then? To me it is ever changing, it is learning new things (most of which are not found in text books), and it is about helping patients heal both emotionally and physically from a chronic condition.