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Implications for practice and research
▪ A pressure redistributing wheelchair cushion, used in a fitted wheelchair, is recommended to reduce the incidence of sitting-acquired pressure ulcers in nursing home residents.
▪ Selecting a wheelchair cushion must be a thought-out and well-advised decision and must be based on the expertise of a multidisciplinary team specialised in seating and mobility.
▪ Wheelchair fit and function must be monitored and adjusted frequently to avoid missing foot and arm rests which may cause more pressure and shear on the bony prominences.
▪ More research is needed to study the effect of repositioning protocols (posture and frequency) for at-risk patients seated in a wheelchair.
When seated in a chair, the body weight causes the greatest exposure to pressure over the ischial tuberosities.1 As a result of the rather small loaded area, pressure will increase significantly. Without appropriate reduction of pressure and shear, a pressure ulcer may occur very quickly.
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