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Prevention & Maintenance

Prevention is always better than treatment, although some wounds, such as those caused by surgical procedures, are unavoidable. Here are some guidelines in prevention and wound management that are of interest to referring physicians, clinicians and patients.

  • Prevent dry skin. Keep the skin clean and well lubricated with moisturizing lotions and petroleum-based salves.
  • Move immobile patients frequently. Bedridden patients should be repositioned every two hours; patients in chairs, every hour.
  • Keep the patients weight off the affected and wound-prone areas by using specially designed beds, off loading boots and heel protectors. Do not massage areas where bones are prominent.
  • Massaging can traumatize the skin and underlying tissue and can create a wound.
  • Use a draw sheet to turn and lift immobile patients. The sheets will eliminate the friction and shearing that can traumatize skin and tissue.
  • Monitor the patients nutrition. A well balanced diet, and when appropriate, nutritional supplements aid healing.
  • Monitor Incontinence. Wash rinse and dry skin thoroughly after each episode. Apply protective barriers to guard against dampness, and when appropriate, initiate a bowel/bladder training program.

Additional Cautions for Diabetic Patients

  • Keep feet clean and dry.
  • Avoid contact with hot surfaces such as pavement or skin.
  • Wear properly fitting shoes.