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Grading pressure sores
Parent has pressure sores in hospital

Symptoms of Pressure Sores

Pressure sores, otherwise known as bed sores, pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers, can develop in potentially any patient when they spend too long lying or sitting in one position. They typically affect people who are confined to a bed or chair as the result of a debilitating illness and can be very painful for those who suffer from them. 

Pressure sores are wounds that occur when a continuous pressure or friction is placed on one area of the body, damaging the skin. This happens because the pressure stops blood from flowing normally, leading the cells to die and the skin to break down.

Patients in hospital or in a care home

Bedbound patients will most likely develop pressure sores on their:

  • Elbows
  • Ankles
  • Knees
  • Head (back of)
  • Shoulders
  • Shoulder blades
  • Breasts (female patients)
  • Genitals (male patients)
  • Ears (rims of)
  • Toes
Pressure sores in hospital

Disabled or wheelchair bound

Patients who use a wheelchair are at a greater risk of developing pressure sores on their:

  • Spine
  • Tailbone
  • Buttocks
  • Shoulder blades
  • Arms (back of)
  • Legs (back of)

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