Skincare – Importance​

Skin-care is the most important aspect in the lives of persons with spinal cord injury. To safeguard our health and to sit, stand, walk, work and be active in the community and in the family, good quality skin is a must; the more so for skin in the areas of the body where you have no touch or pain sensation or only limited sensation. 

If you do not take care of your skin by providing adequate pressure relief, bedsores can develop, take a long time to heal, keep recurring and severely compromise the quality of life. This is why skin care is of utmost importance. 

The routines are a must if you:

  • Do not have touch and pain sensation.
  • Have touch sensation, but no pain sensation.
  • Have only limited touch and pain sensation.
  • Have complete touch sensation, but only partial pain sensation.

Results of a study in India

82% of SCI persons trained in best skin-care practices suffer pressure ulcers (bedsores).

One hundred and eight participants with SCI participated in this study. Of which, 96 (89%) were males, 68 (63%) were between the age of 16–40, 73 (68%) had complete lesions and 82 (76%) were working.

It was found that a large portion of the study population, 89 (82%), had developed Pressure Ulcers post injury. The severity of the ulcer was graded as mild by 38 (43%) participants, moderate by 12 (13%) participants and severe by 39 (44%) participants.

This study clearly indicates that poor pressure relief practices lead to PU development in persons with SCI, irrespective of their level of independence, employment status or leisure pursuits thus hampering their functional independence at home, work and in daily activities that subsequently reduces their quality of life.

Source: Engagement in occupational activities and pressure ulcer development in rehabilitated South Indian persons with spinal cord injury

A Mathew, S Samuelkamaleshkumar, S Radhika and A Elango

Spinal Cord advance online publication, 13 November 2012; doi:10.1038/sc.2012.112

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