Skin tears, skin stripping and tension blisters are common but avoidable examples of Medical Adhesive-Related Skin Injury (MARSI). MARSI is damage to the skin that may occur when medical adhesives are not selected, applied and/or removed properly. When you better understand MARSI, you're better equipped to protect your patients.
While there are a variety of ways to help reduce the risk of MARSI, the most important things can be summarized in three steps.
Step 1: Assess
Assessing the skin at regular intervals, while also accounting for contextual factors about the patient and their health history, can help guide adhesive product selection.
Step 2: Select
Choosing the right medical adhesive for the right situation is critical to patient care. Considering the assessment information above, plus things like intended use of the adhesive and anticipated wear time, can help ensure you make the optimal choice.
Step 3: Use
Proper application and removal of adhesive products is key to minimizing skin damage and reducing the risk of MARSI.1 Learning and practicing the correct techniques can go a long way.
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1. McNichol L, Lund C, Rosen T, Gray M. Medical adhesives and patient safety: state of the science. Consensus statements for the assessment, prevention and treatment of adhesive-related skin injuries. J WOCN. 2013;40(4):365-380.
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