Pressure Injury Prevalence in Acute Care Hospitals With Unit-Specific Analysis: Results From the International Pressure Ulcer Prevalence (IPUP) Survey Database


Natural Sciences

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Journal of Wound, Ostomy, and Continence Nursing

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PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to determine overall pressure injury (PI) prevalence and hospital-acquired pressure injury (HAPI) prevalence in US acute care hospitals. Additionally, analysis of patient characteristics associated with HAPIs will be presented.

DESIGN: Observational, cross-sectional cohort study.

SUBJECTS AND SETTING: An in-depth analysis of data was performed from the International Pressure Ulcer Prevalence™ (IPUP) Survey database for years 2018-2019 that included 296,014 patients. There were 914 participating US acute care facilities in 2018 and 887 in 2019. Overall PI prevalence and HAPI prevalence over time were also examined for 2006-2019 acute care data from 2703 unique facilities (1,179,108 patients).

METHODS: Overall PI prevalence and HAPI prevalence were analyzed from the 2006-2019 IPUP survey database. Recent data for 2018-2019 PI prevalence are reported separately for medical-surgical, step-down, and critical care unit types. PI stages, anatomic locations, Braden score associated with HAPIs, and body mass index were analyzed.

RESULTS: Overall PI prevalence and HAPI prevalence data declined between 2006 and 2019; however, the prevalence plateaued in the years 2015-2019. Data from 2018 to 2019 (N = 296,014) showed that 26,562 patients (8.97%) had at least one PI and 7631 (2.58%) had at least one HAPI. Patients cared for in medical-surgical inpatient care units had the lowest overall PI prevalence (7.78%) and HAPI prevalence (1.87%), while critical care patients had the highest overall PI prevalence (14.32%) and HAPI prevalence (5.85%). Critical care patients developed more severe PIs (stage 3,4, unstageable, and deep-tissue pressure injuries [DTPIs]), which were proportionally higher than those in the step-down or medical-surgical units. The sacrum/coccyx anatomic location had the highest overall PI prevalence and HAPI prevalence, except for DTPIs, which most common occurred on the heel.

CONCLUSIONS: Overall and HAPI prevalence has plateaued 2015-2019. Prevalence of HAPIs, especially in critical care units, remain high. While medical advancements have improved survival rates among critically ill patients, survival may come with unintended consequences, including PI development.