The purpose of this study was to identify the purpose, type, and site of medical adhesives
(MAs) used for patient care and to measure the incidence
of medical adhesive-related skin injury (MARSI) among patients in a pediatric intensive care unit (PICU).
A prospective observational study.
SUBJECTS AND SETTING:
The sample comprised 60 children hospitalized at a 13-bed PICU in a university-affiliated tertiary care hospital in Yangsan (southeastern Korea) from August 2 to October 25, 2017. The median age was 2.9 months, and the composition of male and female was 34 (56.7%) and 26 (43.3%), respectively.
The skin of all participants was examined by first-line staff nurses every shift and occurrences of MARSI were confirmed by a wound care specialist. Characteristics of MA use were analyzed with descriptive statistics, and incidence
rates of MARSI were calculated using 3 methods: (1) rate per 100 patients, (2) rate per 100 MAs, and (3) rate per 1000 days of MA use. Chi-squared (χ2
) tests were conducted to analyze associations between MARSI and sex, age group, and primary service type (medical vs surgical).
The total number of MAs used was 414 and the total day of use of MAs was 1424.8. Medical adhesives
most frequently used were endotracheal tube fixation devices (55/414) and fixation devices for the face (167/414). The number of MARSI occurrences was 35 cases in 23 patients; skin stripping was the most common form of MARSI (26/35). The incidence
rate was 58.3 MARSIs per 100 patients, 8.5 MARSIs per 100 MAs, and 24.6 MARSIs per 1000 days of MA use. The MARSI incidence
rate was significantly different based on age group (P
We observed a frequent occurrence of MARSI among patients in the PICU, especially in patients requiring long-term use of MAs such as central line dressings or in MAs placed in high-moisture areas such as near an endotracheal tube. We highlight the importance of regular skin inspection and frequent but gentle replacement of MAs for prolonged use of MAs in critically ill children.