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Pressure Injuries: Common Sites

Bony prominences are the areas of bone that are close to the skin's surface. These areas are most susceptible to pressure injuries because they have the least amount of cushioning. Which pressure points are vulnerable for a particular patient depend on the position in which most of that patient’s time is spent. Also check for pressure injuries on the skin over implanted medical devices, such as pacemakers.

Pressure points to remember

Common sites of pressure ulcers when lying on the back include the heel, sacrum, elbow, shoulder, and the back of head.

On the back

Common sites of pressure ulcers when sitting include the shoulder blade, the buttocks, the ball of the foot and the heel.


When lying on the side, pressure ulcers can occur on the ankle, knee, hip, shoulder or ear.

On the side

Online Medical Reviewer: Freeborn, Donna, PhD, CNM, FNP
Online Medical Reviewer: Hurd, Robert, MD
Online Medical Reviewer: Image reviewed by StayWell medical illustration team.
Date Last Reviewed: 3/1/2018
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