Response Factors Surrounding Progression of Pressure Ulcers in Community-Residing Adults With Spinal Cord Injury

  • Published 2009 in

Abstract

Florence A. Clark, PhD, OTR, FAOTA, is Professor and Chairperson, Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Southern California, Los Angeles. OBJECTIVE. This study examined how community-dwelling adults with spinal cord injury (SCI) respond in real-life circumstances after detecting a low-grade (Stage 1 or Stage 2) pressure ulcer. METHOD. We performed a secondary analysis of personal information profiles obtained in a previous qualitative research study. Profiles were examined to explore how individualized lifestyle considerations affected pressure ulcer risk in 19 adults with SCI who responded to an early ulcer that later progressed to a medically serious level. RESULTS. On the basis of a total of 46 pressure ulcer events, we identified a typological framework that described eight primary response categories and seven subcategories. CONCLUSION. The findings have significant practice implications for occupational therapists who provide services for adults with SCI living in the community. The importance of combining an initial individualized preventive intervention with structured follow-up within a person’s unique everyday life setting is further explored.

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