Bed Sores, Pressure Sores And Decubitus Ulcers
A decubitus ulcer – more commonly known as a bed sore or pressure ulcer– is an open lesion on the skin. They are a common sign of nursing home neglect and, if left untreated, can allow dangerous and deadly infections to develop in the victim. Crandall & Pera Law helps families throughout Kentucky whose loved ones have suffered or become ill because of untreated bed sores. Our team of registered nurses and attorneys, along with our paralegals and trusted outside medical advisors, allow us to build comprehensive cases against nursing homes and nursing home staff when their neglect leads to an increased risk to the health of your family member.
The basics of bed sores
Bed sores are formed when blood is unable to flow to the skin and the tissues underneath it. They are usually the result of pressure being placed on one part of the body for an extended amount of time. Elderly patients in wheelchairs or those who are bedridden are at the greatest risk of pressure ulcers, though they can affect anyone with limited mobility. They develop quickly and advance through four stages: the first stage may look like a bruise and present with tenderness, whereas a stage III or IV pressure ulcer may result in tissue loss and/or an infected wound.
Bed sores are usually caused by:
- Constant pressure on a particular patch of skin, such as the tailbone or thighs for residents in wheelchairs.
- Friction, such as between the skin and bed. The risk increases if the resident is dragged or if the bed sheets are dirty.
- Shear, which occurs in residents in hospital beds. If the resident’s body sinks but the skin does not move, the skin can stretch and become more susceptible to bed sores.
Nursing home staff can help reduce the chances of pressure ulcers by repositioning residents with mobility issues. This allows blood to flow back into the skin and tissues. Replacing the linens and helping residents with their personal hygiene can also eliminate the chance of residents developing pressure sores.
How Crandall & Pera Law can help
Our attorneys and nurses can distinguish between the beginning stages of bedsores and the advanced stages. We also investigate the practices of the nursing home where your loved one lives to determine whether the inadequate care is the result of a systematic problem, and what percentage of residents develop later-stage bed sores with additional medical complications. We strive to provide you and your family with all available options and our recommendations regarding how to proceed.
Untreated bed sores can lead to infection
At Crandall & Pera Law, we stand up for the rights of elderly nursing home residents throughout Kentucky. We help guide you when you have difficult decisions to make about your family’s future. To learn more about bed sores and nursing home neglect, please call 855-444-6651 or fill out this convenient online contact form.