Objectives: The incidence of pressure sores, which can cause morbidity and mortality in chest and cardiac surgery patients, was reported to be up to 41% in intensive care patients. However, pressure sores can be avoided if the appropriate precautions are taken. In this study, the objective was to determine risk factors that play a role in the development and prevalence of pressure sores in cardiac surgery patients. Methods: The study included 1956 patients who underwent cardiothoracic surgery and who stayed in the intensive care unit (ICU) for more than 48 hours. The data were obtained retrospectively from nurse and physician follow-up records. The patients were evaluated in terms of demographic and clinical characteristics, and factors such as the presence of a pressure ulcer on admission to the ICU, the grade of the pressure sore, and a Braden pressure sore risk score. The risk factors were compared in patients who did and did not develop pressure sores during their ICU stay. Results: In this study, the prevalence of pressure sores was 2.1%. Advanced age (62.17±41 years), a high Euroscope value, the presence of diabetes mellitus, peripheral vascular disease, preoperative atrial fibrillation, ejection fraction <30%, and urgency of operation were among the preoperative risk factors for the development of decubitus ulcers, and significant postoperative risk factors were a level of low hemoglobin or glucose, hypoalbuminemia, and a lengthy period of mechanical ventilation or intensive care. Conclusion: Patients in cardiovascular and thoracic surgery ICUs should be evaluated for pressure sores in the early period. Prompt identification and control of risk factors reduces hospitalization time, morbidity, and most importantly, mortality.
Corresponding Author: Akarsu Ayazoglu T.