TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) — About 40 percent of hospital-acquired pressure injuries (HAPIs) are unavoidable, according to a study published in the September issue of the American Journal of Critical Care.

Joyce Pittman, Ph.D., R.N., from the University of South Alabama in Mobile, and colleagues conducted a descriptive, retrospective study to examine the proportion of HAPIs among patients in critical and progressive care units that are unavoidable and to determine risk factors that differentiate avoidable from unavoidable HAPIs. Data were included for 165 patients.

The researchers found that 41 percent of HAPIs were unavoidable. Unavoidable HAPIs were less likely for patients with congestive heart failure and those who were chemically sedated, had systolic blood pressure below 90 mm Hg, and received at least one vasopressor (odds ratios, 0.22, 0.38, 0.52, and 0.44, respectively). The likelihood of having an unavoidable HAPI was increased for those with bowel management devices (odds ratio, 2.19). The odds of developing an unavoidable pressure injury increased with each one-day increase in stay when length of stay was incorporated into the model (odds ratio, 1.04). The likelihood of having an unavoidable HAPI was increased more than fivefold for participants with a previous pressure injury (odds ratio, 5.27).

“The findings of this study provide important information and new knowledge for critical care nurses and other health care providers and highlight the importance of pressure injury prevention documentation,” the authors write.

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