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J Wound Care. 2007 Apr;16(4):145-50.

Use of polarised light as a method of pressure ulcer prevention in an adult intensive care unit.

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Department of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, University Teaching Hospital, Gent, Belgium.



This single-centred randomised pilot study aimed to examine whether the wound-healing properties of polarised light are effective in preventing grade II or above pressure ulcers in patients admitted to an adult intensive care unit.


Standard pressure ulcer prevention techniques were applied in both research groups. Patients allocated to the test group received supplementary treatment with polarised light once daily for 10 minutes (sacral area and both heels) starting on the first day after admission. The control group received no polarised light.


A control group of 13 patients and an intervention group of 10 patients were included in the study between 1 March and 1 May 2006. There was no statistically significant difference between the groups for composition, standard pressure ulcer prevention or pressure ulcer risk. Observations revealed a statistically significant difference (p = 0.019) between the groups when comparing development of grade II or above sacral or heel pressure ulcers.


Patients treated with polarised light developed significantly (p = 0.019) fewer grade II or above sacral or heel pressure ulcers when compared with a control group receiving no polarised light. Further research is required.

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