Buy this Article for $10.95

Have a coupon or promotional code? Enter it here:

When you buy this you'll get access to the ePub version, a downloadable PDF, and the ability to print the full article.


Braden Risk Assessment Scale, intensive care unit, pressure ulcer, randomization, risk factors, viscoelastic foam support surface



  1. Ozyurek, Pakize PhD, RN
  2. Yavuz, Meryem PhD, RN


Aims and objectives: The aim of this study is to compare whether differences exist between 2 viscoelastic foam support surfaces in the development of new pressure ulcers.


Background: There is evidence to support the use of viscoelastic foam over standard hospital foam to reduce pressure. A comparative effectiveness study was done to compare 2 viscoelastic foam support surfaces.


Design: A randomized controlled trial was carried out.


Method: The study was performed in 2 intensive care units between October 1, 2008, and January 4, 2010. Patients (n = 105) admitted to intensive care unit were randomly assigned to viscoelastic foam 1 (n = 53) or viscoelastic foam 2 support surface (n = 52).


Results: In total, 42.8% of all patients developed a new pressure ulcer of stage 1 or worse. By stages, pressure ulcer incidence was 28.6%, 13.3%, and 1.0% for stages 1, 2, and 3, respectively. There was no significant difference in pressure ulcer incidence between the viscoelastic foam 1 and 2 groups (X2 = 0.07, df = 1, P > .05).


Conclusions: No difference was found between 2 different viscoelastic foam surfaces in the prevention of pressure ulcers in patients treated in intensive care.


Relevance to Clinical Practice: Pressure ulcer incidence in critically ill patients remains high. Nurses must compare current products for effectiveness and develop innovative systems, processes, or devices to deliver best practices.