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What is a ‘kennedy terminal ulcer’?
A Kennedy Terminal Ulcer or Kennedy ulcer is a specific type of bed sore (also referred to as pressure sore, pressure ulcer or decubitus ulcer) that is characterized by rapid onset and rapid tissue breakdown. The ‘Kennedy Ulcer’ was named after Karen Lou Kennedy-Evans- the nurse who discovered the medical condition.
Like most bed sores, Kennedy ulcers are believed to develop due to poor blood circulation that results from unrelieved pressure. However, Kennedy ulcers, differ from other bed sores because of:
Rapid onset, a wound may go from a blister to stage 4 within hours
The wounds tend to grow downward, as opposed to horizontally
The wounds are most often located on the sacrum
Wounds are almost exclusive to the elderly population
The wounds are usually irregularly shaped, frequently described as pear shaped
Death occurs quickly, many patients succumb to kennedy ulcers within 24-48 hours of their onset
The treatment options for people with Kennedy ulcers are limited due rapid development and progression. Consequently, most treatment for Kennedy uclers is focused on providing pain relief.
Bed Sore FAQ is sponsored from a grant provided by Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers. The purpose of Bed Sore FAQ i
s to provide information to to patients and families in order to make informed decisions concerning
circumstances where a pressure sore has developed during an admission to a nursing home, hospital or
assisted living facility. This material is for informational purposes and is not intended to take the place of
medical advice. Learn more