Choosing a Wound Dressing: In choosing appropriate wound dressings for elderly patients, the geriatric nurse must consider such factors as the type of wound, method of healing, and condition of the skin.

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With more than 2000 wound care products on the market, choosing an appropriate dressing for the geriatric patient can prove to be a difficult task. Age-related changes in skin structure and decreased resistance to noxious stimuli in the environment place the elderly patient at higher risk for wound complications. Understanding the principles of moist wound healing and how dressing materials can be used to promote healing outcomes gives the clinician a foundation upon which to base treatment decisions. Assigning products to generic dressing categories further facilitates dressing selection, allowing the treatment protocol to be individualized to the patient, the wound, and the setting.

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