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Resources for the Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment based
Proactive and Personalised Primary Care of the Elderly

Waterlow Score

Purpose : Assessment of risk for the development of pressure sore or ulcer


Admin time :  5-10 min

User Friendly :  High

Administered by : Nurses, healthcare professionals and carers at the patient/client interface


Content : Seven known risk factors that contribute towards the development of pressure ulcers.

These risk factors include the patient's:

  • age and gender

  • body mass index (BMI)

  • level of continence

  • skin condition (healthy or broken)

  • appetite

  • level of mobility (fully mobile to bed-bound)

  • individual risk factors, e.g. medication, surgery and trauma

The patient is then allocated a score for each of the above criteria. The total score, in conjunction with the nursing staff's clinical expertise, places the patient into one of three pressure sore risk categories:

  • a score of 10-14 indicates "at-risk"

  • a score of 15-19 indicates "high risk"

  • a score of 20 and above indicates "very high risk"


Author :  Judy Waterlow, 1985

Copyright : Judy Waterlow

Free to download and use from copyright holder's website

Waterlow Score

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Waterlow Score - online

BMI calculator

This Tool is used in the assessment of

Pressure Ulcers

Back To : Pressure Ulcers

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Pressure Ulcers is one of 4 conditions identified as

Geriatric Syndromes

Back To : Geriatric Syndromes

Geriatric syndromes, older person in distress, CGA based Proactive Primary Care of the Elderly
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