Learn the Importance of the Braden Scale for Predicting Pressure Ulcer Risk

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Robert Wood Johnson assisted with the development of the Braden scale for predicting pressure ulcer risk while studying the risk factors associated with pressure ulcers. His findings and the Braden scale were later published in the Nursing Research journal in 1987 after extensive studies were conducted to test its reliability.

Since the original findings, a second study was conducted in 1998, which made the Braden scale more accurate and added timing assessments. Once the Braden scale was determined to be reliable for both black and white subjects in 2002, this scale became commonly used and has been translated into numerous languages to predict the risks of pressure ulcers.

How is the Braden Scale Used?

The Braden Scale for predicting pressure ulcer risk is widely used throughout hospitals and nursing homes to provide medical professionals with an accurate assessment for which patients are at risk for pressure ulcers and the severity of the ulcers. The Braden scale evaluates individuals based on six categories: the degree of moisture the skin is exposed to, sensory perception, the ability of an individual to change positions, an individual’s activity level, nutrition, and the likeliness of friction or shear harming the skin.

Each of these six categories is broken down into four subcategories used to analyze an individual’s risk for pressure sores. Each subcategory describes the severity or risk factor for each category. Subcategories for the Braden Scale include a numerical 1 through 4 assessment, with 1 being the most severe. After an assessment has been conducted, the results are evaluated and if an individual has a Braden Score of 12 or less they are considered to be high risk for the development of pressure ulcers.

Why is the Braden Scale important?

The Braden scale for predicting the risks of pressure sores is essential because it provides medical professionals with the information needed to properly care for an individual. It allows medical professionals to make accurate judgments based on the results of the Braden Score. As a result, the medical professionals will know how to properly care for an individual to reduce their risk for pressure ulcers and the complications associated with the ulcers and sores, such as how often an individual needs to have their position changed.

Due to the bustling business of medical facilities and the numerous patients cared for, medical professionals can quickly view the individual’s Braden Score to know how to properly care for that person. Using the results of the six specific risk factors, medical professionals can accurately and easily provide an individual suffering from pressure ulcers or sores with the preventative care they need.

To view the current version of the Braden scale for predicting ulcer risks and the assessment information used to predict the risks for pressure sores, visit Rural Family Medicine.


“Prevention Plus” BradenScale.com

“How does the Braden Scale help in the prevention of bedsores?” BedSoreFAQ

“The Braden Scale for Predicting Pressure Ulcer Risk” QualityNet.org