Skin Care

Margaret Heale's picture

By Margaret Heale, RN, MSc, CWOCN

So after I last wrote, I was to assist with a dressing change, as the resident is more relaxed with somebody having their focus on her and not also trying to do the procedure. I have done a million or two dressings in my time but had not seen a negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) vacuum till I started helping out at the nursing home where my granddaughter works. I came across the treatment accidentally, very accidentally.

Lindsay Andronaco's picture

By Lindsay D. Andronaco RN, BSN, CWCN, WOC, DAPWCA, FAACWS

Part 1 in a series on skin failure

A few years ago, a panel of experts gathered to evaluate the nature of skin changes at life's end (SCALE) and to discuss the Kennedy Terminal Ulcer (KTU). The panel concluded that there are observable changes in the skin at the end of life and that these situations are complex. It should be noted that the skin is an organ and it can fail. The skin can also demonstrate what is happening internally, such as multisystem organ failure.

Laurie Swezey's picture

By Laurie Swezey RN, BSN, CWOCN, CWS, FACCWS

Radiation is used to kill cancer cells. Unfortunately, radiation does not discriminate between cancer cells and healthy cells. Skin cells are particularly vulnerable, and almost everyone who undergoes radiation will experience some skin changes

Margaret Heale's picture

By Margaret Heale, RN, MSc, CWOCN

Here I am again, Matron Marley, working as a volunteer in the local nursing home on just my second visit. I had a little difficulty getting in and discovered it was because of the door lock alarm on a resident. Such a good idea but a bit irritating. I managed to sneak in while the resident moved away briefly and entered into a bright airy reception area, so welcoming. The first home I ran was really dingy with cold stone steps to the 1st floor where the ‘geri’ ward was. Today I am greeted by a woman about my age with a pocket book asking, “Is the bus here yet, I have to pick up Robbie.” I heard the door click as she neared it, locking out my granddaughter who works here. I coaxed her away from the door with a promise to help her find the bus down a long hallway. It is soon revealed that she is a wanderer and spends much of her time trying to exit the building. Her mention of the bus brought to mind a patient I'd once had named Mable.

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Margaret Heale's picture

By Margaret Heale, RN, MSc, CWOCN

Well, I was a matron such a long time ago when we still had candy stripers and you swallowed tablets or wrote on them with chalk. My granddaughter is doing some work at a local nursing home and offered to show me around. I held my breath as we entered, to assess the OOS (odor offense scale), something I learned when doing nursing home assessments way back when. A breath out and a slow even breath in through the nose and- mmm! Most unexpected, it must be almost lunchtime. Quite different from my day. Today's chat is about why.

Paula Erwin-Toth's picture

By Paula Erwin-Toth MSN, RN, CWOCN, CNS

Spring is finally here. I hope that you were able to enjoy SAWC earlier this month, and have been enjoying the May weather. This time of year is one of renewal and promise. This can be a time of year when individuals with wounds find hope and encouragement or fall prey to despair. It is essential as health care providers that we do not become so focused on the wound of our patients that we fail to see the complexities affecting the individual.

Aletha Tippett MD's picture

By Aletha Tippett MD

This month's blog is in response to a comment on Recognizing and Treating Wounds Caused by Pyoderma Gangrenosum:
"What is green clay? Where do you get it? What does it do? Thanks for discussing pg in your blog. I'm working with a person whose ulcer is identical to the photo."

Beth Hawkins Bradley's picture

By Beth Hawkins Bradley RN, MN, CWON

How did you acquire your knowledge and skills around the application of NPWT dressings? Most of us learned by observing another clinician doing dressing applications, or from a manufacturer's representative. We likely just imitated what they did, largely winging it. In my work over the past few years, I have been surprised to learn that many excellent clinicians have gaps in technical ability. This article is intended to review principles of NPWT dressing application to increase the accuracy of your techniques. These tips are distilled from principles that are typical of manufacturer guidelines. It is always recommended that you read and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for the product that you are using.

Paula Erwin-Toth's picture

By Paula Erwin-Toth MSN, RN, CWOCN, CNS

Winter weather is upon us and that brings a whole host of challenges. Our skin is more liable to experience dryness, cracking and breakdown. Everyone, especially older adults, are more vulnerable to falls due to slippery steps and walkways. Shoveling heavy, wet snow has been associated with increased risk of heart attacks. Just heading to the mailbox, grocery store or the doctor's office can spell disaster. All of these situations can combine for a 'perfect storm' for risk of skin breakdown at home and all healthcare settings.

David Hite's picture

By David Hite PhD

Diabetes, the leading cause of amputation of the lower limbs, places an enormous burden on both the individual and the health care system. It’s estimated that the annual cost for treating diabetic foot problems is over one billion dollars. During their lifetime, 15 percent of people with diabetes will experience a foot ulcer and about 20 percent of those will require amputation.

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