VOL: 103, ISSUE: 9, PAGE NO: 38Patients with pressure ulcers experience pain that prevents them from moving, according to a pilot study.
Patients with pressure ulcers experience pain that prevents them from moving, according to a pilot study.
This was the main finding from a study funded by the European Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel. Participants also reported that dressing changes and some pressure-relieving devices exacerbated the pain.
Undertaken in four centres in two European countries, the study aimed to explore the lived experience of patients with pressure ulcers. Eight patients who were over 65 years old with a grade 3 or 4 pressure ulcer that had been present for more than a month were recruited. Unstructured interviews were used to explore their experiences.
The researchers identified two other main themes from the interviews: restricted life and the need for coping strategies.
The authors expressed surprise that the theme of endless pain was the major finding and that the pain stopped participants moving. This conflicts with the need for regular repositioning to prevent and manage pressure ulceration.
The pilot identified that the methodology used here could be applied in a larger study.
The authors suggest that these preliminary findings challenge nurses to think about, and perhaps reconsider, how they assess and manage patients with pressure ulceration.
Hopkins, A. et al (2006) Patient stories of living with a pressure ulcer. Journal of Advanced Nursing; 56: 4, 345-353.
Main themes: Pressure ulcers cause endless pain:
Pressure ulcers restrict lifestyle
Patients with pressure ulcers adopt coping strategies