Original Research

Spinal cord injured patients’ knowledge of pressure sores

W. Mudzi, A. Stewart, C. Eales
South African Journal of Physiotherapy | Vol 57, No 4 | a516 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajp.v57i4.516 | © 2018 W. Mudzi, A. Stewart, C. Eales | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 31 August 2018 | Published: 30 November 2001

About the author(s)

W. Mudzi, Ruwa Rehabilitation Hospital, Zimbabwe
A. Stewart, Faculty of Health Sciences, Department of Physiotherapy, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa
C. Eales, Faculty of Health Sciences, Department of Physiotherapy, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa

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Abstract

Despite much effort being put into educating spinal cord injured patients on pressure sore prevention, pressure sores remain a major cause of morbidity and mortality. This study sought to establish: i) paraplegics’ knowledge on pressure sore prevention prior to discharge; ii) the influence of knowledge on pressure sore occurrence during hospitalization; iii) sources of paraplegics’ knowledge on pressure sore prevention. A total of twenty-six men and two women with paraplegia aged between 18 and 45 years participated in the study. A rospective pre-test post-test method using a structured questionnaire was used to test paraplegics’ knowledge on pressure sore prevention. The first interview was done within one week of mobilising in a wheelchair and the second one after two months or a few days before discharge. Pressure sore occurrence and the source of knowledge were also recorded. The results showed that paraplegics’ knowledge on pressure sore prevention at discharge is incomplete. Knowledge gain does not seem to determine whether one will develop pressure sores or not. Physiotherapists (89%), nurses (82%) and occupational therapists (68%) are the main educators of paraplegics on pressure sore prevention in rehabilitation hospitals.


Keywords

paraplegia; spinal cord injury; pressure sores

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