Preventing pressure ulcers

Welcome to Homerton's Pressure Ulcer advice and information page. We service patients across the City and Hackney area. Pressure Ulcers are a significant health risk but are also easily avoidable. This page contains advice and information to help prevent you or someone you care for developing a pressure ulcer.

Pressure Ulcer Facts & Figures:

  • 700,000 people are affected by pressure ulcers each year.
  • 80-95% of pressure ulcers are thought to be avoidable with the right prevention strategies (See link to SSKIN, right)
  • The consequences of pressure ulcers are severe and can result in death.
  • Treating pressure ulcers costs the NHS up to £2640 million a year – the single most costly wound for the health service!!

What to look out for

pressure ulcer

If you catch a pressure ulcer early you can prevent it worsening by relieving the pressure from that area, for example, repositioning in bed or standing if able.

Without intervention, a small area of redness which doesn’t go white with pressure applied (blanching - as seen above) can quickly develop in to a more serious problem. Pressure ulcers can change from a small area of redness to an open wound in a matter of hours without intervention. 
If you are concerned about pressure ulcer risk or think you or someone you care for may be developing a pressure ulcer:

  • immediately remove pressure from the affected area (change position). 
  • contact your GP for an urgent appointment. 
  • or speak to another health or social care professional if you are seeing one that day.

chart showing common triggers for pressure ulcers