Tissue Viability

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Undertake tissue viabillity risk assessments.

1.1 Describe the anatomy and physiology of healthy skin.

Skin is the largest organ of the body, covering and protecting the entire surface of the body. The total surface area of skin is around 3000 sq inches or roughly around 19,355 sq cm depending on age, height, and body size. The skin, along with its derivatives, nails, hair, sweat glands, and sebaceous glands forms the integumentary system. Besides providing protection to the body the skin has a host of other functions to be performed like regulating body temperature, immune protection, sensations of touch, heat, cold, and pain through the sensory nerve endings, communicating with external openings of numerous other body systems like digestive system, urogenital system, and respiratory system via mucous membranes.The skin is primarily composed of three layers. The skin, which appears to be so thin, is still itself divided into epidermis, dermis, and subcutaneous layer or hypodermis. Each layer has it own function and own importance in maintaining the integrity of skin and thereby the whole body structure. Pressure sores or decubitus ulcers are the result of a constant deficiency of blood to the tissues over a bony area such as a heel which may have been in contact with a bed or a splint over an extended period of time. The surface of the skin can ulcerate which may become infected. Eventually subcutaneous and deeper tisssues are damaged. Besides the heel, other areas commonly involved are the skin over the buttocks, sacrum, ankles hips and other bony sites of the body.

1.2 Describe the changes that occur when damage caused by pressure develops early signs of pressure sites are redness that doesnt fade rapidly, heat and/or swelling when pressure is relieved. there may be callous formation that has flaky skin around it and a "mushy" feeling when surrounding skin is palpitated. blisterlike eruptions can develop and become a profound wound if pressure relief

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