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Types of Pressure Ulcers: Causes and Treatment for Pressure Ulcers

A pressure ulcer or bed sores or decubitus ulcers are open sore that form when the skin in the particular area decomposes if the individual is kept in a particular position for too long without budging the person's weight to another part of the body. These kinds of sores or ulcers are commonly seen among patients who have been bedridden for too long or who are confined to a particular place such as on a wheelchair for long periods of time.

Some individuals also develop sores if they are placed on bed for a short period of time especially after an injury or surgery. The reason the skin breaks down is because the blood supply to the particular region collapses if the individual remains on a particular side of the body, the pressure that is constant on the area brings down the supply of blood and the skin tissue that is pressed upon dies out.

The pressure ulcer begins initially as red skin or a sore appearance on the outer layer of the skin and slowly forms into a cloister. This leads to an open oozing sore and in its late stages it appears as a gaping rotten wound. Mostly such sores are formed in areas that have bony protrusions such as the skin that is adjacent to the bone like the hips, back of the head, shoulders, elbow, ankles, heels, back etc. Having a fragile skin can also add to the complicatedness of the issue.

There are four stages of pressure ulcers. The Stage I indicates mild soreness while the Stage IV is an indication of advanced ulceration. Stage I is when the sore or the reddened area continues to stay red even though the area is pressed onto with the finger for a long period of time. The first stage is n indication that the sore is beginning to develop. In the second stage blisters form and the sore begins to open up, in the third stage the skin breaks down completely and the sore is an open wound that also damages the tissue beneath the skin. The fourth stage is a serious indication that the sore has reached muscle and bone tissue and deep within the organ.

Stages of Pressure Ulcers - How to Treat Pressure Ulcers

The best treatment for pressure ulcer is tretaing in the first stage itself after which the sores would require medical help to prevent further infection and ulceration. The signs that the infection has reached elsewhere in the body are high temperature, malaise, and mental haziness. These symptoms must not be ignored and the patient must be moved to a hospital as soon as possible.