How do microclimate factors affect the risk for superficial pressure ulcers: A mathematical modeling study

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Abstract

In this study, a mathematical model is developed for analyzing the effects of the microclimate on skin tolerance to superficial pressure ulcers (SPUs). The modeling identified the following factors as such that decrease the tolerance of skin to SPUs: (i) increase in the skin temperature, (ii) increase in the ambient temperature, (iii) increase in the relative humidity, (iv) increase in the skin-support (or skin-clothing-support) contact pressures, and (v) decrease in permeabilities of the materials contacting the skin or being close to it, e.g. the covering sheet of the support and clothing. The modeling is consistent with relevant empirical findings and clinical observations documented in the literature, explains them from a basic science aspect, and can be further developed for design of interventions, safer patient clothing and supports that consider the optimization of microclimate factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)81-88
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Tissue Viability
Volume20
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2011

Keywords

  • Ambient temperature
  • Pressure
  • Relative humidity
  • Shear
  • Skin temperature

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