Topic Progress:

Category/Stage 3

Category/Stage 3: Full-thickness skin loss

Subcutaneous fat may be visible, but bone, tendon or muscle are not exposed. Slough may be present but does not obscure the depth of tissue loss. May include undermining and tunnelling. The depth of a category/stage 3 pressure ulcer varies by anatomical location. The bridge of the nose, ear, occiput and malleolus do not have (adipose) subcutaneous tissue and category/stage 3 ulcers can be shallow. In contrast, areas of significant adiposity can develop extremely deep category/stage 3 pressure ulcers. Bone/tendon is not visible or directly palpable.