Pressure Ulcer Prevalence by Level of Paralysis in Patients With Spinal Cord Injury in Long-term Care

TitlePressure Ulcer Prevalence by Level of Paralysis in Patients With Spinal Cord Injury in Long-term Care
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsCowan L.J, Ahn H., Flores M., Yarrow J., Barks L.S, Garvan C., Weaver M.T, Stechmiller J.
JournalAdv Skin Wound Care
Date PublishedMar
ISBN Number1527-7941
Accession Number30801350
Keywords*Long-Term Care, *Severity of Illness Index, Adult, Comorbidity, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Paralysis/complications, Pressure Ulcer/*epidemiology/etiology, Quadriplegia/epidemiology, Spinal Cord Injuries/complications/*epidemiology

OBJECTIVE: Scientific literature suggests pressure ulcer (PU) risk increases as immobility increases, indicating that more extensive paralysis confers a greater risk of PU. Yet the specific level of paralysis (ie, hemiplegia vs paraplegia vs quadriplegia), apart from neurodegenerative diagnoses, has never been examined in the long-term care (LTC) population. This study examined the prevalence of PU among LTC residents with different paralysis levels. METHODS: The authors conducted a secondary data analysis of the 2012 US Minimum Data Set of LTC facilities (n = 51,664 residents). Measures included PU stage, level of paralysis, functional impairments, comorbidities, and sociodemographic factors. After removing residents with neurodegenerative disease, comatose patients, and those with hip fractures from the analysis, logistic regressions were used to examine the association of risk factors and sociodemographic characteristics with the presence of PU. MAIN RESULTS: The sample included 7,540 patients with quadriplegia, 11,614 patients with paraplegia, and 32,510 patients with hemiplegia in LTC facilities. The PU prevalence in the sample (stages 2, 3, and 4; suspected deep-tissue injury; and unstageable PUs) was 33.9% for patients with quadriplegia, 47.4% for patients with paraplegia, and 9.6% for patients with hemiplegia. CONCLUSIONS: Within paralysis groups (quadriplegic, paraplegic, hemiplegic), risk factors for PU differed in type and magnitude. The PU rates associated with quadriplegia and paraplegia are much higher than LTC residents without paralysis, and PU prevalence for hemiplegia is similar to the rate in LTC residents without paralysis. When the risk factor of paraplegia versus quadriplegia was isolated, PU prevalence for patients with paraplegia was significantly higher.

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Short TitleAdvances in skin & wound careAdv Skin Wound Care
Alternate JournalAdvances in skin & wound care