This guideline covers risk assessment, prevention and treatment in children, young people and adults at risk of, or who have, a pressure ulcer (also known as a bedsore or pressure sore). It aims to reduce the number of pressure ulcers in people admitted to secondary or tertiary care or receiving NHS care in other settings, such as primary and community care and emergency departments.


This guideline includes recommendations on:

Who is it for?

  • Healthcare professionals
  • People who are at elevated risk of developing pressure ulcers, such as those who have significantly limited mobility

Guideline development process

How we develop NICE guidelines

This guideline updates and replaces NICE guideline CG29 (September 2005) and NICE guideline CG7 (October 2003).

Next review: 2018

Your responsibility

The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.

Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.

  • National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) accreditation logo