What Is the Healing Time of Stage II Pressure Ulcers? Findings from a Secondary Analysis

Palese, Alvisa and Saiani, Luisa and Pota, Ilenia and Laquintana, Dario and Stinco, Giuseppe and Di Giulio, Paola and PARI-ETLD Group, (2015) What Is the Healing Time of Stage II Pressure Ulcers? Findings from a Secondary Analysis. Advances in Skin and Wound Care, 28 (2). pp. 69-75. ISSN 1527-7941

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Pressure ulcers (PrUs) remain a concern for clinicians, patients, caregivers, and researchers. Although data on prevalence and incidence are available, as well as evidence-based prevention and management intervention, PrU healing time is underreported. OBJECTIVE: The objective of this study was to evaluate the healing time of Stage II PrUs. METHODS: Secondary analysis of data collected from a multicenter randomized clinical trial was undertaken. Patients (a) with a Stage II PrU, (b) older than 18 years, and (c) who had given informed consent were included. The endpoints of the study were complete re-epithelialization of the PrU measured with the Pressure Ulcer Scale for Healing Tool 3.0 and the healing time. A network of 46 healthcare centers located in northern Italy participated in the study. RESULTS: Two hundred seventy patients with an average age of 83.9 years (95% confidence interval [CI], 82.71Y85.10) were recruited. Among 270 Stage II PrUs included, 153 lesions healed (56.7%), whereas 74 (27.4%) were still present after 10 weeks of follow-up. For 43 lesions (15.9%), the follow-up evaluation was interrupted because of patient death or transfer to units not included in the study. The PrUs healed on an average of 22.9 days (95% CI, 20.47Y25.37 days), with a median of 18 days. The average healing time for PrUs of less than 3.1 cm2 was significantly shorter (19.2 days; 95% CI, 16.6Y21.8) compared with those 3.1 cm2 or greater (31.0 days; 95% CI, 26.4Y35.6 days) (P = .000). CONCLUSIONS: To achieve complete re-epithelialization in Stage II PrUs, it takes approximately 23 days. This is quite a long time if we consider that pressures of only 60 to 70mmHg for between 30 and 240minutes are needed to cause tissue damage. On average, a small ulcer heals 12 days faster compared with those with a surface of 3.1 cm2 or greater. KEYWORDS: Stage II pressure ulcer, healing time, re-epithelialization

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