Characteristics and Prevalence of Chronic Wounds in Primary Health Care

Rui Passadouro, Anabela Sousa, Cristina Santos, Helena Costa, Isabel Craveiro

Abstract


Introduction: Wounds are a public health problem, with a strong impact on quality of life. They can be classified as chronic when they last more than six weeks. According to their origin, the most frequent are chronic pressure wounds, diabetic and vascular (arterial or venous) ulcers. A venous cause is found in about 80% of vascular wounds. This study aims to characterize chronic wounds from patients of ACeS PL area.

Methods: This is a descriptive cross-sectional study, with an analytical component, using a convenience sample consisting of patients with chronic wounds, identified by nursing professionals, either at home or in primary care treatment rooms.

Results: The prevalence of chronic wounds in the studied population is 0.84/1000, 1.1/1000 in men and 0.69/1000 in women (p < 0.05). Patients over 80 years of age have a prevalence of 5.68/1000, which is higher when compared to younger individuals (p < 0.05). Regarding their type, vascular wounds are the most common (36%) and of these, 77.7% have venous origin.

Discussion and Conclusion: The prevalence of chronic wound is slightly lower than that found in other studies using the same methodology and is higher in men and in older ages. We found an excessive proportion of pressure ulcers of categories III and IV, verifying some nonconformity in their diagnosis and treatment. Hence, we suggest the creation of a wound consultancy and a multidisciplinary training group in the health service.


Keywords


Chronic Disease; Prevalence; Portugal; Wounds and Injuries

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.29021/spdv.74.1.514

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