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Skin problems in palliative care 

Skin problems in palliative care
Skin problems in palliative care

Patricia Grocott

, Georgina Gethin

, and Sebastian Probst

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date: 16 May 2022

Nursing aspects of palliative wound care are driven by patient and family goals integrated with three components of wound management: the management or palliation of the underlying cause of the wound, management of wound-related symptoms, and management of the wound and peri-wound skin. Wounds most commonly found include pressure ulcers, fungating malignant wounds, and fistulae. Patients with blistering skin conditions, inherited and acquired, have extensive longstanding wounds and palliative care needs. In addition, meticulous skin care for patients of all ages with debilitating long-term conditions is crucial to prevent unnecessary skin breakdown. The symptoms and local problems associated with broken skin and wounds include odour, exudate, excoriation, maceration, bleeding, pain, and pruritus, and key clinical interventions include the application of wound dressings and skin care products. Unless these are managed effectively and consistently, body image and feelings of self-worth are affected together with the ability to socialize and maintain employment.

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