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Specialty Beds

Specialty beds were developed to replace hospital beds or home beds to help reduce or relieve pressure that the weight of your body, and especially your bones, exert on your skin as it presses against the surface of your bed. Specialty beds require electricity or a battery pack to alter the level of support through inflation and deflation of air or movement of fluid. The purpose of this type of product is to constantly change the pressure of the support surface against the skin. Specialty beds are basically divided into three categories; air-fluidized beds, low-air-loss beds, combination air-fluidized/low-air-loss beds.

Our certified professional rehab department(ATP/NRRTS) at Handi Medical Supply can provide a bed mapping to determine which type of specialty bedding is most appropriate for each individual.

Air-fluidized beds

Air-fluidized beds consist of a bed frame containing silicone coated beads. This type of bed uses both air and fluid to provide support. Beads in the bed behave like a liquid when air is pumped through them. On this type of bed, the body is immersed in the warm, dry fluidized beads. Air-fluidized beds are recommended for patients with multiple large pressure ulcers. They are not recommended for patients with pulmonary disease or unstable spines or for patients who are ambulatory. Because so much air is needed to fluidize the total bed, dehydration (from heat escaping from the body) is a risk.

Low-air-loss beds

A low-air-loss bed consists of a bed frame with a series of connected air-filled pillows with or without minute holes that allow air to escape. The amount of pressure in each pillow is controlled and can be changed to provide maximum pressure reduction for the individual patient.

Combination air-fluidized/low-air-loss beds

Some beds are a combination of an air-fluidized and low-air-loss bed. The lower half of the bed contains the air-fluidized component while the upper half of the bed contains the low-air-loss component. This bed is similar in size to a hospital bed and the head is adjustable (allowing the bed to be raised), but it is lighter than a total air-fluidized system.

Air-fluidized and low-air-loss beds are designed to conform to the body contours. In addition to providing pressure relief, these specialty beds also eliminate shear and friction and, decrease moisture. (It is important to keep the intact skin around the pressure ulcer dry to prevent it from breaking down and to prevent the development of additional pressure ulcers.)

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