Nursing Home Abuse
Fighting for Victims of Nursing Home Abuse and Bedsores in Dublin, Hawkinsville and Macon, Georgia
If you’ve ever seen or heard about a bedsore, you understand why it is the last thing an elderly patient should ever have to experience in a nursing home or health care facility. Bedsores are pressure sores that come from spending too much time in one position.
They most commonly occur in areas where your skin is closer to your bones, including your back, hips, and elbows. The condition occurs when steady pressure prevents blood from flowing to the skin. The skin dies, and damage to nerves may prevent pain signals from reaching a patient’s brain. Anyone who is bedridden or incapacitated is at risk for developing a bedsore. Left untreated, these open wounds can easily lead to other life-threatening infections.
Health care professionals should keep their patients clean and dry, change their positions every few hours, and use pressure-relieving products to reduce the risk of sore development. A qualified health care professional will notice the symptoms of a developing bedsore. They do not appear overnight, but start as a red or discolored area. If caught in time, a caretaker can prevent a pressure-damaged area from turning into a full-blown sore.
Recognizing a bedsore on a patient is a red flag for nursing home neglect. Once a bedsore has developed, they take time and effort to heal. A patient should only reapply pressure to the area once it has fully healed.
The stages of a bedsore can help you determine how long a patient has suffered from neglect.
- Stage I – In its earliest stages, a bedsore looks discolored. It may be red, blue, or purple. When you press down on a bruise, it lightens with the pressure. The beginning stages of a bedsore do not do so, because the skin has no blood supply. The area may be uncomfortable for a patient.
- Stage II – Stage II manifests as an open would. You may notice a superficial wound or a blister in the area.
- Stage III – As the condition worsens, the tissue damage becomes more apparent. The wound deepens and may appear crater-like. Near the deepest part of a wound, you may notice yellowed necrotic flesh.
- Stave IV – At its worse stage, the condition bares bones and tendons. The sore may continue to grow in size with pieces of dead tissue in the bottom and surrounding areas.
A bedsore can develop in as little as a week if someone does not move at all, but the condition develops more often after weeks or months of an extremely sedentary lifestyle. Treatment includes surgery, pain management, and wound cleaning/dressing.
Finding the Right Attorney
Whether your loved one is in a nursing home or being cared for by an in-home nurse, recognizing the signs of bedsores can help you prevent serious, life-threatening consequences. Bedsores are some of the most traumatic effects of neglect, and a family should never have to pay the cost for professional misconduct.
At Nelson & Smith Attorneys at Law, we are dedicated to providing our clients with the support they need to put a stop to elder neglect and abuse. Our injury attorneys work with our clients from the first day to address extreme incidents of neglect including bedsores rapidly. Health care professionals need to understand that neglectful behaviors that can lead to bedsores are completely unacceptable. Our team of nursing home abuse lawyers in Macon has a reputation for success, and we fight hard for our elderly clients and their families.
If you notice the signs of bedsores on your loved one, take action today. Contact our Macon office for a free, no obligation case evaluation, and keep others from suffering from the same fate.