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Spinal-Injury.net :  Spinal Cord Injury - Skin Breakdown

 
 

Skin Breakdown

Vulnerable Areas of the bodySkin breakdowns (also termed "decubitus ulcers") or pressure sores are a major complication associated with spinal cord injury. They occur as a result of excessive pressure, primarily over the bones of the buttock (particularly the ischial tuberosities and the trochanters at the hip). Following a spinal cord injury, there are not only changes in muscle tone and sensation, but shifts in the supply of blood to the skin and subcutaneous tissues. Additionally, there is a loss of the normal elastic nature of the tissues underlying the skin. Increased stiffness, vascular alterations and alterations in muscle tone combine to significantly reduce the skin's ability to withstand pressure. It is estimated that the closing "pressure" for skin breakdown is between 40 and 50 millimetres of mercury (about the same amount of pressure as placing a stamp onto an envelope). This complication is combated fairly aggressively through the use of pressure-relieving cushions that are either gel based or consist of a number of air bladders to reduce the risk of the person "bottoming out". The cost associated with medical and/or surgical care of a single decubitus ulcer can run to upwards of £10000 per admission. This does not take into consideration the loss of productivity if the individual is in the work place.

Skin Breakdown
pneumonia
Osteoporosis and Fractures
Heterotopic Ossification
Spasticity
Urinary Tract Infections
Autonomic Dysreflexia
Deep Vein Thrombosis
Pulmonary Embolism
Orthostatic Hypotension
Cardiovascular Disease
Syringomyelia
Neuropathic / Spinal Cord Pain
Medication Problems
Hyperthermia
Hypothermia

Also see - Pressure Sores
 


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Spinal-Injury.net :  Spinal Cord Injury - Skin Breakdown

 
 

 
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