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Clinician Resources: Opioid-Prescribing, Diabetes, Pressure Injuries

Here are a variety of resources you might want to explore.

Considering opioid-prescribing practices

Healthcare providers’ prescribing patterns for opioids vary considerably by state, according to a report in Vital Signs from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Here are some facts from the report:

• Each day, 46 people die from an overdose of prescription painkillers in the United States.*
• Healthcare providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for painkillers in 2012, enough for every American adult to have a bottle of pills.
• Ten of the highest prescribing states for painkillers are in the South. (more…)

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Best of the best, the sequel

By Donna Sardina, RN, MHA, WCC, CWCMS, DWC, OMS

Welcome to our second annual “Best of the Best” issue of Wound Care Advisor, the official journal of the National Alliance of Wound Care and Ostomy (NAWCO). This may be the first time you have held Wound Care Advisor in your hands because normally we come to you via the Internet. Using a digital format for this peer-reviewed journal allows us to bring you practical information that you can access anytime, anywhere and gives you the ability to access videos and other links to valuable resources for you and your patients. (more…)

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Understanding the crusting procedure

By Nancy Morgan, RN, BSN, MBA, WOC, WCC, DWC, OMS

Each issue, Apple Bites brings you a tool you can apply in your daily practice.

The crusting procedure produces a dry surface and absorbs moisture from
broken skin through an artificial scab that’s created by using skin barrier powder (stoma powder) and liquid polymer skin barrier. The crusting procedure is most frequently used on denuded peristomal skin to create a dry surface for adherence of an ostomy pouching system while protecting the peristomal skin from effluent and adhesives. Crusting can increase pouching-system wear time, resulting in fewer pouch changes and less disruption to irritated peristomal skin. The crusting procedure can also be used for other denuded partial-thickness weeping wounds caused by moisture. (more…)

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The DIME approach to peristomal skin care

By Catherine R. Ratliff, PhD, APRN-BC, CWOCN, CFCN

It’s estimated that about 70% of the 1 million ostomates in the United States and Canada will experience or have experienced stomal or peristomal complications. Peristomal complications are more common, although stomal complications (for example, retraction, stenosis, and mucocutaneous separation) can often contribute to peristomal problems by making it difficult to obtain a secure pouch seal. This article will help you differentiate types of peristomal complications, including how to prevent and manage them. (more…)

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Guidelines for safe negative-pressure wound therapy

safe negative-pressure wound therapy

By Ron Rock MSN, RN, ACNS-BC

Since its introduction almost 20 years ago, negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT) has become a leading technology in the care and management of acute, chronic, dehisced, traumatic wounds; pressure ulcers; diabetic ulcers; orthopedic trauma; skin flaps; and grafts. NPWT applies controlled suction to a wound using a suction pump that delivers intermittent, continuous, or variable negative pressure evenly through a wound filler (foam or gauze). Drainage tubing adheres to an occlusive transparent dressing; drainage is removed through the tubing into a collection canister. NWPT increases local vascularity and oxygenation of the wound bed and reduces edema by removing wound fluid, exudate, and bacteria. (more…)

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Becoming a wound care diplomat

By Bill Richlen, PT, WCC, CWS, DWC, and Denise Stetter, PT, WCC, DCCT

The Rolling Stones may have said it best when they sang, “You can’t always get what you want,” a sentiment that also applies to wound care. A common frustration among certified wound care clinicians is working with other clinicians who have limited current wound care education and knowledge. This situation worsens when these clinicians are making treatment recommendations or writing treatment orders not based on current wound-healing principles or standards of care. (more…)

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How to assess wound exudate

how to assess wound exudate

By Nancy Morgan, RN, BSN, MBA, WOC, WCC, DWC, OMS

Each issue, Apple Bites brings you a tool you can apply in your daily practice.

Exudate (drainage), a liquid produced by the body in response to tissue damage, is present in wounds as they heal. It consists of fluid that has leaked out of blood vessels and closely resembles blood plasma. Exudate can result also from conditions that cause edema, such as inflammation, immobility, limb dependence, and venous and lymphatic insufficiency.
(more…)

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It takes a village: Leading a wound team

By Jennifer Oakley, BS, RN, WCC, DWC, OMS

I used to think I could do it alone. I took the wound care certification course, passed the certification exam, and took all of my new knowledge—and my new WCC credential—back to the long-term care facility where I worked. I was ready to change the world.

It didn’t take me long to figure out that I couldn’t change the complex world of wound care alone. I needed a team of specialists who could manage my patient’s troubles with nutrition, swallowing, activities of daily living, positioning, body image issues, and many other areas that required expertise I didn’t have. (more…)

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Managing venous stasis ulcers

Managing chronic venous leg ulcers — what’s the latest evidence?

By Kulbir Dhillon, MSN, FNP, APNP, WCC

Venous disease, which encompasses all conditions caused by or related to diseased or abnormal veins, affects about 15% of adults. When mild, it rarely poses a problem, but as it worsens, it can become crippling and chronic.

Chronic venous disease often is overlooked by primary and cardiovascular care providers, who underestimate its magnitude and impact. Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) causes hypertension in the venous system of the legs, leading to various pathologies that involve pain, swelling, edema, skin changes, stasis dermatitis, and ulcers. An estimated 1% of the U.S. population suffers from venous stasis ulcers (VSUs). Causes of VSUs include inflammatory processes resulting in leukocyte activation, endothelial damage, platelet aggregation, and intracellular edema. Preventing VSUs is the most important aspect of CVI management. (more…)

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How to apply a spiral wrap

By Nancy Morgan, RN, BSN, MBA, WOC, WCC, DWC, OMS

Each issue, Apple Bites brings you a tool you can apply in your daily practice.

Description

The spiral wrap is a technique used for applying compression bandaging.

Procedure

Here’s how to apply a spiral wrap to the lower leg. Please note that commercial compression wraps come with specific instructions for proper bandaging technique. Be sure to follow these instructions to provide safe and effective compression. (more…)

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How dietary protein intake promotes wound healing

dietary protein intake promotes wound healing

By Nancy Collins, PhD, RD, LD/N, FAPWCA, and Allison Schnitzer

Nutrition is a critical factor in the wound healing process, with adequate protein intake essential to the successful healing of a wound. Patients with both chronic and acute wounds, such as postsurgical wounds or pressure ulcers, require an increased amount of protein to ensure complete and timely healing of their wounds.

Elderly patients with wounds pose a special challenge because of their decreased lean body mass and the likelihood of chronic illnesses and insufficient dietary protein intake. To promote a full recovery, wound care clinicians must address the increased protein needs of wound patients, especially elderly patients. (more…)

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