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Int J Nurs Stud. 2012 Apr;49(4):416-26. doi: 10.1016/j.ijnurstu.2011.10.007. Epub 2011 Nov 5.

Multi-stage versus single-stage inflation and deflation cycle for alternating low pressure air mattresses to prevent pressure ulcers in hospitalised patients: a randomised-controlled clinical trial.

Author information

  • 1Department of Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Ghent University, Belgium. Liesbet.demarre@ugent.be

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

The duration and the amount of pressure and shear must be reduced in order to minimize the risk of pressure ulcer development. Alternating low pressure air mattresses with multi-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells have been developed to relieve pressure by sequentially inflating and deflating the air cells. Evidence about the effectiveness of this type of mattress in clinical practice is lacking.

AIM:

This study aimed to compare the effectiveness of an alternating low pressure air mattress that has a standard single-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells with an alternating low pressure air mattress with multi-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells.

METHODS AND MATERIALS:

A randomised controlled trial was performed in a convenience sample of 25 wards in five hospitals in Belgium. In total, 610 patients were included and randomly assigned to the experimental group (n=298) or the control group (n=312). In the experimental group, patients were allocated to an alternating low pressure air mattress with multi-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells. In the control group, patients were allocated to an alternating low pressure air mattress with a standard single-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells. The outcome was defined as cumulative pressure ulcer incidence (Grade II-IV). An intention-to-treat analysis was performed.

RESULTS:

There was no significant difference in cumulative pressure ulcer incidence (Grade II-IV) between both groups (Exp.=5.7%, Contr.=5.8%, p=0.97). When patients developed a pressure ulcer, the median time was 5.0 days in the experimental group (IQR=3.0-8.5) and 8.0 days in the control group (IQR=3.0-8.5) (Mann-Whitney U-test=113, p=0.182). The probability to remain pressure ulcer free during the observation period in this trial did not differ significantly between the experimental group and the control group (log-rank χ(2)=0.013, df=1, p=0.911).

CONCLUSION:

An alternating low pressure air mattress with multi-stage inflation and deflation of the air cells does not result in a significantly lower pressure ulcer incidence compared to an alternating low pressure air mattress with a standard single-stage inflation and deflation cycle of the air cells. Both alternating mattress types are equally effective to prevent pressure ulcer development.

© 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
22056165
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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