A pressure ulcer is an area of localized tissue destruction directly related to prolonged pressure. The loss of skin integrity produces significant consequences not only for the individual, but also for the community, with reported costs of $8.5 billion for pressure-ulcer care. Because of these costs, health care providers should be seeking prevention programs that identify high-risk individuals and implement preventive measures before the ulcer begins. Once the individual develops an ulcer, assessment of healing is critical to determine the appropriate treatment. Successful treatment depends on the principles of debridement, cleansing, bacterial control, wound dressing, and occasionally, surgical intervention.