Bedsores: A Sign of Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect
In the grand scheme of nursing home maladies, bedsores might strike the casual reader as one of the less serious problems. It is important to understand, though, that bedsores are more than mere discomfort.
On the contrary, bedsores pose serious and life-threatening risks for infection, inflammation, sepsis, cancer, and even death. They also take a serious toll on nursing home residents’ enjoyment and quality of life.
At Kaplan Lawyers, PC, we understand how serious the bedsore problem is in New York nursing homes. Experts estimate that about 10% of American nursing home residents are suffering from bedsores right now. That’s a stunning figure when you consider that the majority of bedsore cases are preventable and/or treatable.
For family members, it is imperative to understand that bedsores, especially if recurrent, are among the most common signs of nursing home abuse or neglect. If your loved ones have experienced multiple or severe bedsores, they are not receiving the care they deserve.
This page is designed to help you understand bedsores as a sign of nursing home abuse or neglect. You’ll learn what to look for, the potential complications, and how legal action can make a difference.
The Stages of Bedsore Progression
Bedsores go by many names, including pressure sores, pressure ulcers, and decubitus ulcers. Whatever you call them, they are painful and dangerous. Bedsores can develop quickly in the wrong conditions, and they’re hard to treat. That’s why prevention is so critical.
A bedsore typically begins as what looks like a simple sore and then quickly progresses to form a profound ulcer. Clinically, that progression is divided into four stages:
- The skin is not broken.
- The affected skin is red (on light skin) or discolored (on darker skin).
- The affected skin does not blanch.
- The site may or may not feel tender or painful. It may be cool or warm, soft or firm.
- The outer layer of skin is damaged or completely breaks away.
- The wound may begin to look less like a sore and more like a fluid-filled blister. The blister may even rupture.
- The wound is typically shallow at this point, with a pink or red color.
- The wound becomes much deeper, taking on a crater-like appearance.
- Fat is exposed beneath the missing skin.
- Dead tissue, which typically has a yellowish color, may be visible inside the wound.
- Dead tissue is more likely to become apparent at this stage. It may begin to turn from yellow to a dark color, and it may also crust over.
- You may be able to see muscle tissue, tendons, or bone inside the wound.
Common Sites for Bedsores and Pressure Ulcers
Bedsores are most common in elderly people who spend long periods of time in bed or in a wheelchair.
For those in a wheelchair, you should check for bedsores in the following areas:
- Along the spine
- Backs of arms
- Backs of legs.
For those confined to a bed, inspect these areas:
- Lower back
- Back of the head
- Sides of the head
- Skin behind the knees.
How Our New York Nursing Home Neglect Lawyers Can Help
Frequent or serious bedsores are almost always a sign of nursing home abuse or neglect. You and your loved ones have a right to expect preventative services and effective treatment in order to avoid the serious complications caused by these pressure ulcers. When nursing homes breach the standard of care, their victims are entitled to financial compensation for their damages.
If you have experienced recurrent bedsores in any senior living facility in our state, the New York nursing home neglect lawyers in our office can help. Kaplan Lawyers, PC has years of experience in holding nursing homes accountable for their negligence. We work tirelessly in pursuing compensation for nursing home residents and their families.
Please contact us right away to schedule a free consultation with the New York nursing home neglect lawyers in our firm. We do not charge for our services unless we are able to recover compensation on your behalf! Remember, though, that time limits apply to these cases. Please contact us right away.
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