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Print version ISSN 1134-928X


PANCORBO-HIDALGO, Pedro L. et al. Pressure ulcers epidemiology in Spain in 2013: results from the 4th National Prevalence Survey. Gerokomos [online]. 2014, vol.25, n.4, pp.162-170. ISSN 1134-928X.

Aim: 1) To determine the prevalence of pressure ulcers (PU) at hospitals, nursing homes (NH) and the community in Spain; 2) To determine the frequency of nosocomial PU (those acquired during patients' stay at hospital or NH), y 3) To describe the characteristics of the patients and ulcers. Methods: Cross-sectional survey with a questionnaire aimed to nurses working at hospitals, nursing homes and primary care, both publics and privates, in Spain. Date: from 1st March to 31th May in 2013. Variables: Description of the centres, number of in-patients or residents at NH and number of patients with PU, demographic and clinical characteristics of the patients. For each one of the 3 settings, crude prevalence and average prevalence was calculated. Results: 509 valid questionnaires were obtained; 66.7% from hospitals; 21.6% from community care and 16.7% from nursing homes. Prevalence percentages: at hospitals, adults: 7,87% (CI95%: 7,31-8,47%); paediatric units, 3,36% (CI95%: 1,44-7,61%); nursing homes 13,41% (CI95%: 12,6-14,2%); and community care, 0,44% (CI 95%: 0,41-0,47%) among older than 65 years and 8,51% (CI95%: 7,96-9,1%) among people in home care programs. The Intensive Care Units (ICU) have the highest prevalence, reaching the 18%. On the whole, 65.5% of the PU are nosocomials and only the 29.4% were developed at homes. The majority of the lesions are classified in category 2. The duration of 30 days (as median) and the area was of 6 cm2 (median). Conclusions: In Spain, the prevalence of PU is not decreasing, from previous studies; and even it has doubled in nursing homes. At hospitals, the ICU are the places with highest prevalence. When considering the nursing homes, the private ones have higher prevalence than the public ones. Two-thirds of the PU has a nosocomial origin (hospitals or nursing homes), what could mean a failure in prevention.

Keywords : Pressure ulcers; prevalence; epidemiological study; hospital; nursing homes; community care.

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