Emerging technology for enhanced assessment of skin status Academic Article uri icon


  • Pressure injury (PI) prevention has become a key nursing priority that requires clear identification of visual cues representative of PI risk. There is generalized agreement that erythema and skin wetness and/or maceration should be routinely examined by the clinician as part of PI risk assessment. Such an assessment is largely qualitative, deeply reliant on the perception and interpretation of the clinician. Consequently, skin parameters may be misinterpreted, underestimated, or even missed completely. Objective techniques are needed to augment accurate assessment of erythema and skin wetness and/or maceration. Biophysical skin analysis devices have been widely used in the cosmetic industry and clinical research to measure certain skin parameters for the purpose of skin health evaluation. This article describes 3 devices that enable noninvasive digital measurements of epidermal hydration, erythema, and epidermal lipids, respectively. The clinical application of biophysical skin analysis instruments in the assessment PI-related skin parameters could provide a feasible alternative to subjective assessment.

publication date

  • 2017