Alginate dressings for treating pressure ulcers

Evidence Summaries

Level of Evidence = D

There is insufficient evidence on the effects of alginate dressings compared with alternative treatments.

The quality of evidence is downgraded by study quality, indirectness (only short-term outcomes reported) and imprecise results.

A Cochrane review 1 included 6 studies with a total of 336 subjects. The included studies compared alginate dressings with six other interventions that included: hydrocolloid dressings, silver containing alginate dressings, and radiant heat therapy. Each of the six comparisons included just one study and these had limited participant numbers and short follow-up times. All the evidence was of low or very low quality. Where data were available there was no evidence of a difference between alginate dressings and alternative treatments in terms of complete wound healing or adverse events.


1. Dumville JC, Keogh SJ, Liu Z et al. Alginate dressings for treating pressure ulcers. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2015;(5):CD011277.  [PMID:25994366]

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