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Why Are Bed Sores Dangerous for Elders in Nursing Homes?

Nursing homes and their staff owe it to their residents to provide adequate medical attention and to treat everyone with decency and respect. Bed sores are a painful, unsightly, and even fatal condition for disabled or bedridden persons. Nursing home bed sores are more than just a severe medical problem; they are strong proof of nursing home negligence and elder abuse. When patients do not get adequate medical treatment, the facility is held accountable for the damage sustained by those entrusted to its protection.

Dalli & Marino, LLP, is New York’s leading elder abuse and personal injury litigation practice, dedicated to maximizing reimbursement in situations involving bed sores caused by nursing facility neglect and abuse. Our nursing home abuse attorneys advocate for individuals unable to speak for themselves and seek justice for the victims of bed sores in care facilities and injuries caused by senior nursing care abuse and neglect.

What Causes Bed Sores in Nursing Homes?

Bed sores, also known as pressure sores or pressure ulcers, are skin lesions caused by prolonged pressure on the skin for hours or days. When pressure is applied to a specific body area for an extended period, the blood flow to the skin can become limited, resulting in bed sores. Nursing home residents may acquire bed sores extremely fast—in some situations, as quickly as two to three hours—depending on their physical and general health. Patients confined to a wheelchair or bed are especially vulnerable to bed sores if not given the correct treatment.

Nursing home bed sores are the outcome of nursing home negligence and, if extreme, may even be considered elder abuse. To prevent additional injury to their loved ones, relatives of bedridden seniors must report geriatric mistreatment and evidence of bed sores immediately. The following are some of the most common reasons of nursing home neglect and abuse that result in bed sores:

  • Inadequate or incorrect diet and hydration
  • Failure to regularly replace bed sheets and linens
  • Failure to change dirty diapers and garments as soon as possible
  • Isolating patients for lengthy periods
  • Inadequate policies and strategies for taking care of patients who are immobile or unconscious
  • Not looking for early indications of bed sores frequently
  • Failure to disclose growing bed sores to doctors for medical treatment

A lawsuit against a nursing home is a means for society to openly confront the harsh and intolerable treatment, hold those institutions responsible for their conduct, and avoid further harm to others. Elder abuse cases are not simply about getting compensation for injuries or the tragic death of a loved one.

How Can Nursing Homes Prevent Bed Sores?

Preventing Stage One and most Stage Two pressure sores may not be possible. On the other hand, Stage One and Stage Two pressure sores can be readily treated with careful attention. Furthermore, good treatment should keep them from progressing to Stage Three or Stage Four bed sores. Because of this, most medical specialists concur that severe bed sores, particularly in stages Three and Four, are readily avoidable.

Getting significant bed sores in a nursing home frequently indicates nursing care negligence. Pressure release is the most critical strategy for the prevention of bed sores. Every two hours, residents in bed bound and wheelchair-bound facilities must be turned and repositioned as part of standard pressure-relieving treatments. This implies that a staff member must assist a person who is bedridden in turning from their left to their right side in bed every two hours. This entails helping someone using a wheelchair adjust their position every two hours. It may also imply shifting the client from a wheelchair to a bed or from a bed to a recliner.

Other common pressure-relieving procedures include the use of pressure-relieving gadgets. This may imply a specific pressure-relieving mattress for bedridden patients. A customized pressure-relieving pad in the wheelchair may be necessary for persons in wheelchairs. Elevating the heels with cushions or wearing special pressure-relieving booties may be necessary for those at risk of acquiring heel pressure sores. However, in addition to changing or moving an immobile nursing home patient frequently, there are additional actions that can assist in lessening the chance of a pressure sore forming, such as:

  • Keeping the patient’s skin clean and dry
  • Keeping the resident’s skin safe
  • Ensure sufficient nourishment and hydration consumption
  • Checking their skin during a bath

You may also ask your loved one’s doctor whether there is a particular cushion or mattress that might aid in relieving pressure against the skin.

Who Is Responsible for Pressure Sores in Nursing Homes?

The nursing home is often held liable for infected bed sores. A nursing facility owes it to its inhabitants to offer professional, attentive care. Recognizing bed sores is an essential aspect of that treatment.

Your elder care provider might be held responsible for a pressure sore if:

  • They either missed bed sore, or they saw and failed to diagnose it. Bed sores are so prevalent in older individuals that all elder care personnel should look for them.
  • They detected it but believed it was unimportant. For example, if personnel misinterpreted a Stage Three bed sore as a less urgent Stage Two sore.
  • They either did not address bed sores or did not apply the appropriate remedy.
  • They did not alter the patient’s medication regimen in response to the sores. This is a sadly prevalent issue. Cleaning and treating a pressure sore is pointless if the root issue is not treated.

In these circumstances, personnel failed to fulfill their obligations to your loved one. Their carelessness is what caused any issues with the sore. They are held legally responsible for the inconvenience.

Contact the Expert New York Nursing Home Attorneys at Dalli & Marino Today

Severe bed sores might have catastrophic effects. It can cause pain and misery, major physical concerns, and growing medical expenditures. In some situations, it can cause long-term difficulties or even death. Nothing is sadder than witnessing a little, easily treatable sore turn fatal.

If you or a loved one has been the recipient of elder abuse, whether via nursing home negligence or another kind of negligent treatment, please know that you have alternatives. If you have a case regarding bed sores in a nursing home, assisted living facility, or hospital anywhere in New York, do not hesitate to call the legal office of Dalli & Marino, LLP. Reach us at (888) 465-8790 or by filling out our contact form. We also speak Spanish.

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