What To Do When a Loved One Develops Bedsores

If nursing duties such as turning a patient, proper bathing and hygiene are not followed, bed sores can develop, causing unnecessary pain and suffering. Untreated bedsores can result in sepsis and wrongful death. There is no excuse for allowing bedsore to develop inside a facility other than patient neglect. If you notice any pressure sores on your family member, you should notify the doctor and the head nurse immediately. Document the nursing home bedsore with pictures. Create a list of the nurses and doctors you have spoken with about the wound. If your loved one develops bed sores inside a hospital, assisted living, or nursing home, you should seek legal advice. Medical facilities should be held responsible for these horrendous and preventable wounds. The law provides for an avenue of recovery through the civil justice system. This is called a bedsore neglect lawsuit, and this claim can be filed against the negligent nursing home or hospital where bedsore developed.

Lack of movement due to age or medical condition and improper hygiene are significant factors in developing bedsores. Pressure sores result from restricted blood flow in a particular area, usually heels, buttocks, back, and head. If the patient is not repositioned by nurses often, and properly, the sores or ulcers develop. After bedsore has developed, the medical condition of the patient and poor hygiene can hinder the healing process.  If a patient is left in their urine in clothing or a bed, further underlying infections can result. The deteriorating skin can be permanently damaged. Regular movement of patients at scheduled times, at least every two hours, and properly checking to make sure that their clothing and bedding are dry are the responsibility of the nursing home or hospital. If the facility is doing an adequate job of hiring and training personnel, these routine patient care techniques should be in place. Special pillows, cushions, air mattresses, and other items can be used to reduce pressure on the skin and should be used regularly for non-mobile patients.

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Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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