Wound care in older people: overcoming the challenges of assessment and management
Intended for healthcare professionals
Evidence and practice    

Wound care in older people: overcoming the challenges of assessment and management

Joanna Swan Senior lecturer in tissue viability, Birmingham City University, Birmingham, England
Jane Mogford Lead nurse for tissue viability, St Giles Hospice, Lichfield, England
Katie Leek Lead nurse for tissue viability and continence, Royal Stoke University Hospital, Stoke-on-Trent, England

Why you should read this article:
  • To enhance your understanding of age-related skin changes and susceptibility to wounds in older age

  • To increase your awareness of the principles of wound assessment and management in older people

  • To recognise that wound healing is not always achievable or realistic in an older person

Age-related skin changes lead to increased susceptibility to skin damage and delayed wound healing, which is exacerbated by comorbidities such as cardiovascular disease and diabetes mellitus. In some cases, wound healing is not achievable or realistic and this needs to be reflected in the wound management plan. To improve outcomes and experience in older people presenting with wounds it is important to select wound management products that protect the wound bed and surrounding skin, minimise trauma, reduce symptoms and/or promote healing. This article explores how conducting holistic wound assessments, setting realistic treatment aims, and using wound management strategies tailored to each person’s needs and wishes can have a positive effect on older people’s quality of life.

Nursing Older People. doi: 10.7748/nop.2024.e1471

Peer review

This article has been subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software




Conflict of interest

None declared

Swan J, Mogford J, Leek K (2024) Wound care in older people: overcoming the challenges of assessment and management. Nursing Older People. doi: 10.7748/nop.2024.e1471

Published online: 24 April 2024

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