Nursing homes should provide safe residences where our loved ones are protected and cared for. Unfortunately that is not always the situation. A recent nursing home neglect lawsuit was brought by Levin & Perconti on behalf of the estate administrator of a man who died. According to the lawsuit, the nursing home was negligent by allowing pressure sores to develop and worsen. The sores were not treated in a timely manner and the man eventually died as a result. The lawsuit is requesting a jury trial.
How Pressure Sores Form
Pressure ulcers are often difficult to treat. For this reason it is always best to prevent them from happening in the first place. Pressure sores are caused by something constantly rubbing against the skin in the same place. They are common in elderly patients who are bedridden. The inability to move about in the bed makes the formation of bedsores more likely. It is often the responsibility of the caregivers in nursing homes to properly move the patient while in bed. The adequate movement and repositioning of patients in bed will prevent pressure sores from forming.
Stages of Pressure Ulcers
Pressure ulcers begin as small but painful red marks on the skin. If they are not treated and the skin continues to rub in the same spots the small sores can worsen. New pressure sores are considered stage I. As the sore worsens it may develop into a stage II, where there is more pain and irritation. Stage III pressure sores may break the skin and stage IV sores deepen and may reach the tendons or bones. Once the skin is broken there is a risk of infection which requires immediate treatment. If an infection occurs it may be difficult to treat and it could spread throughout the body.
Risks for Elderly Patients
The elderly are at a greater risk for infections due to pressure sores. The sores have likely formed because of a lack of proper care. The treatment of the sores can be even more difficult to manage. Many elderly people have compromised immune systems so their bodies have a harder time fighting off infections. Couple this with improper treatment by staff and lack of medical care and the result could be devastating. In this case, the man suffered with the infection for quite some time before his death. His health significantly declined after getting bedsores.
Bedsores are Preventable
Bedsores are a preventable medical condition. When a resident of a nursing home suffers from bedsores it is likely a sign of neglect. Bedsore prevention should be a serious concern for bedridden patients. Proper care in turning and moving the person must be taken. Further, the patient should be inspected daily so that any bedsores can be quickly noted and treated. The failure to do so constitutes negligence on the part of the nursing home and care providers. If your loved one is the victim of nursing home neglect contact the experienced attorneys at Levin & Perconti to handle your case.
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