Head-of-Bed Elevation in Critically Ill Patients: A Review
Norma A. Metheny, RN, PHD; Rita A. Frantz, RN, PHD
Head-of-Bed Elevation in Critically Ill Patients: A Review: Read Article
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Learning Objectives

At the completion of this program, you will be able to:
  • Critique studies relevant to HOB elevation for pressure ulcer prevention
  • Discuss guidelines for head-of-bed (HOB) elevation to prevent aspiration and pressure ulcers
  • Distinguish relevant studies recommending HOB elevation to prevent aspiration and aspiration-related conditions

Continuing Education Information

CE ID: C1332
Total Contact Hours: 1.00
Pharma Hours: 0.0
Synergy Cat: A
Test Expires: 6/1/2017


Clinicians are confused by conflicting guidelines about the use of head-of-bed elevation to prevent aspiration and pressure ulcers in critically ill patients. Research-based information in support of guidelines for head-of-bed elevation to prevent either condition is limited. However, positioning of the head of the bed has been studied more extensively for the prevention of aspiration than for the prevention of pressure ulcers, especially in critically ill patients. More research on pressure ulcers has been conducted in healthy persons or residents of nursing homes than in critically ill patients.

Publication/Sponsor Information

Critical Care Nurse is an official publication of the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN), and copyright belongs to AACN. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording or by any information storage retrieval system without permission of AACN. For all permission requests, please contact the Copyright Clearance Center, Customer Service, 222 Rosewood Drive, Danvers, MA 01923. (978) 750-8400. The statements and opinions contained herein are solely those of individual contributors and not of the editors, AACN, or The InnoVision Group. The editors, AACN, and The InnoVision Group assume that articles emanating from a particular institution are submitted with the approval of the requisite authority, including all matters pertaining to human studies and patient privacy requirements.

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