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What is a comprehensive risk assessment?

By Jeri Lundgren, BSN, RN, PHN, CWS, CWCN

Prevention of pressure ulcers and skin breakdown begins with a comprehensive risk assessment. Most providers use a skin risk assessment tool, such as the Braden or Norton scale. While these tools have been validated to predict pressure ulcer development, their use alone isn’t considered a comprehensive assessment, and frequently the individual risk factors they identify aren’t carried through to the plan of care. (more…)

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AlloFuse® Select CM Supports Your Patient’s Healing

ALLOFUSE® CORTICAL FIBERS & ALLOFUSE® FIBER BOAT

AlloFuse® Select CM – clinically proven to activate and support bone formation and can be used in a variety of spinal, neurologic, and orthopedic procedures.

AlloSource, one of the nation’s largest providers of cartilage, bone, skin, soft-tissue, and cellular allografts to advance patient healing in surgical procedures and wound care, today announced the release of AlloFuse® Select CM, a premium addition to AlloSource’s AlloFuse portfolio. (more…)

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Imaging technology to aid wound care

Imaging technology to aid wound care

Nash UNC Health Care is continuing its effort to bring cutting-edge technology to the hospital.

Through a recent partnership with a Maryland-based medical imaging and data analytics company called Tissue Analytics, which is dedicated to revolutionizing wound care, Nash UNC Health Care has adopted new state-of-the-art wound imaging technology to its outpatient Wound Care Center. (more…)

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Jim Nabors Would Just Cry

jim nabors

by Dr. Michael Miller

For those of you not as familiar with the Hoosier State as you should be, I used to think it was essentially paradise. Jim Nabors of Gomer Pyle fame is our ubiquitous, tuneful icon with his always well-received “Back Home in Indiana” as a mantra to that source of pride.  Our former Governor “My Man” Mitch Daniels was a genius who, using a combination of intelligence, common sense and the persuasive powers of a midwest Svengali, created an economic model that our neighbors can only lust after. Our medicolegal climate is among the best in the US and well it should be. However, while there are some extraordinary caregivers and facilities here, a recent US News and World Report curiously showed that almost none of our hospitals made their “Best of” lists in any category. That is not to say there is bad care but to not have a single facility in an entire state even achieve an honorable mention gives one pause to reflect. The State newspapers were notoriously quiet on this concerning fact despite their trumpeting of who does what well, when and where. (more…)

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Condemning Patients to a Leap of Faith

leap of faith

by Dr. Michael Miller

I have several letters after my name.  The two that say “DO” indicate that I have the training of a physician and the requisite education and responsibilities that uphold those letters.  They should mean to patients that my ultimate goal is to offer (and provide when the fates allow) the entire spectrum of medical care referable to what I am good at and what they came to seek solace for.  Nothing less and if I keep my ego in check, certainly nothing more. Patients run the gamut of their perception of the medical field.  But like the old sales nemesis called “Bait and Switch”, what is offered on the sign all too often does not truly match what is seen on the shelves.  Arrogant people are that way because they are good at what they do and not afraid to tell others.  As a child, we are told to let others brag about us but failing to let people know what we can and can’t do is integral to our patients’ survival and our success.  The problem is that the glitz and glamour of being a healer all too often clouds our success.  Some time ago, I blogged about the pseudo-utilitarianism of all those so-called “Wound Certification” Exams.  At first blush, these seem to be the key to health, wealth, omniscience and outcomes equaled only by those wound care management companies. (more…)

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Alternate universes – Einstein’s insanity

Wound Care

I remain absolutely amazed that there are so many people doing the same thing and yet doing it so completely different. Depending on where a patient’s wound care and orders originate from, the care I try to translate from that starting point is always a combination of dressing regimens worthy of computer code in their simplicity. The only thing usually missing is the diagnosis. It’s as though they come from an identical planet in an alternate universe.

The issue is that there is the complete dissociation of what is done for a given wound care problem in one practice setting versus another. Having stayed as far away from hospital-based wound care as possible, I continue to be amazed by hospital wound teams touting their expertise while using two to three times a day dressing changes and therapies that are the antithesis of any identifiable evidence. They actually expect entities receiving their cases (including home healthcare agencies, LTAC, skilled facilities, and others) to copy the identical care scenario regardless of their widely variable situations. In fact, the only constant is the patient and his or her condition. (more…)

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Wound care treatment explained at Rotary

Wound Care Solutions at Community Hospitals and Wellness Centers-Bryan

When treating people for wounds, the care team preforms both a comprehensive diagnosis and comprehensive treatment, Kathy Khandaker, director of wound care at Community Hospitals and Wellness Centers-Bryan, told the Bryan Rotary Club at its Friday meeting.

The wound care clinic opened at CHWC in 2006, added ostomy care in 2007, continence care in 2010 and added a full-time physician in 2015. The care team includes a wound care nurse, a hyperbaric oxygen therapy technician and a receptionist in addition to the physician. (more…)

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Frequently asked questions about support surfaces

The National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) describes support surfaces as “specialized devices for pressure redistribution designed for management of tissue loads, microclimate, and/or other therapeutic functions.” These devices include specialized mattresses, mattress overlays, chair cushions, and pads used on transport stretchers, operating room (OR) tables, examination or procedure tables, and gurneys. Some support surfaces are part of an integrated bed system, which combines the bed frame and support surface into a single unit. (more…)

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Knowing when to ask for help

As a wound care expert, you’re probably consulted for every eruption, scrape, and opening in a patient’s skin. Occasionally during a patient assessment, you may scratch your head and ask yourself, “What is this? I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Most wound care experts want to help heal everyone, and most of us love a challenge. But when should we step back and consider referring the patient to another clinician? (more…)

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Clinician Resources

Wound patient’s bill of rights

The Association for Advancement of Wound Care has developed the “Wound Care Patient’s Bill of Rights.” The 10 points include the right to:

know what wound treatment options are available to you

know the benefits, risks, and side effects of your wound care treatments

participate in the development of your treatment plan with your wound care team

have your pain adequately controlled.

The bill of rights is available in both English and Spanish. (more…)

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Practicing emotional intelligence may help reduce lateral violence

It’s been a stressful day at work—nothing new. One confused patient pulled off her ostomy bag, you’re having difficulties applying negative-pressure wound therapy on another, and a third patient’s family is

angry with you. We all experience stressful days, but unfortunately, sometimes we take our stress out on each other. Too often, this ineffective way of identifying and managing stress leads nurses to engage in lateral violence. (more…)

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