To assess pressure ulcer (PrU) treatment in Swiss hospitalized pediatric patients and to determine whether there are differences in PrU treatment, according to demographic characteristics of the patients.
A descriptive multicenter point prevalence study was conducted in June 2009 in all German-speaking pediatric hospitals in Switzerland.
All hospitalized patients from birth up to 17 years or younger in 14 Swiss pediatric hospitals, including all pediatric departments, were assessed.
A total of 412 patients participated in this study.
The instrument and method of the Dutch National Prevalence Measurement of Care Problems were used.
Thirty-five percent of the patients had a PrU. Almost all of these PrUs (94.1%) were of category 1. The most severe PrUs occurred in patients older than 8 years. Age of the patient and department were the only characteristics that significantly influenced the occurrence of PrU categories 2 to 4. Pressure ulcer categories 2 to 4 were mostly covered with hydrocolloid or polyurethane foam dressings. No pediatric-specific guideline regarding PrU treatment is used in the involved hospitals.
Most patients had category 1 PrUs, so appropriate prevention to decrease any further trauma in these patients was necessary. Severe PrUs (categories 2–4) are mostly limited to older pediatric (aged >8 years) patients with chronic conditions or after surgery intervention. A PrU treatment guideline adapted for pediatric needs is recommended.
The authors’ objective was to assess pressure ulcer treatment in Swiss hospitalized pediatric patients and to determine whether there are differences in pressure ulcer treatment, according to demographic characteristics of the patients.
Anna-Barbara Schlüer, MScN, is a Nursing Scientist in the Department of Nursing Development and Science, and the Children’s Research Center, at the University Children’s Hospital Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland. Jos M. G. A. Schols, MD, PhD, is a Professor in the Departments of Family Medicine and Health Services Research; and Ruud J. G. Halfens, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Nursing Science in the Department of Health Services Research, both at CAPHRI-Maastricht University, Maastricht, the Netherlands.
Acknowledgments: The authors thank all the nursing staff and chief nursing officers of all the hospitals involved for their active and interested participation in the study assessment. They also thank all the children and their families for their contribution. In addition, the authors thank Dr Heather Murray for her support in revising the article’s English.
The authors have disclosed they have no financial relationships related to this article.
Submitted March 4, 2013; accepted April 18, 2013.