Purpose: To develop a multimodal procedure for evaluating pressure ulcer-preventing cushions and conduct a comparison of the biomechanics and tissue response induced by 4 pressure ulcer-preventing cushions most commonly prescribed to patients with spinal cord injury in our hospital. Methods: Firstly, the distribution of pressures at the user-cushion interface was analyzed (Xsensor), and secondly, tissue viability was assessed by transcutaneous oxygen pressure (TcPO2) (Radiometer TCM 400) in 22 people with thoracic complete spinal cord injury (T1-T2). The variables analyzed were related with the distribution of pressures and contact surface at the user-cushion interface (Pmax, Pm, Psd, Stot, S>60 and % S>60) and tissue response (TcPO2). Results: The dual-compartment air cushion produced the best Pmax, Pm, Psd and Stot results compared to the other cushions (P<0.05). TcPO2 values did not differ significantly between cushions. Conclusion: A method was developed for the multimodal evaluation of pressure ulcer-preventing cushions that enhances our understanding of how these cushions behave and can help to prevent pressure ulcers in both sports and rehabilitation.
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