Signs of Nursing Home Abuse: Bed Sores, Pressure Sores and Decubitus Ulcers
Memphis nursing home abuse attorneys protecting the rights of elders in West Tennessee for more than 25 years
Bedsores, pressure ulcers, and decubitus ulcers are different names for the same skin disorder that develops when a person spends long periods of time sitting in one position without moving their body around to a different position. When a resident in a nursing home develops a pressure ulcer or bedsore, this is an indication that they are not being attended to properly and could be suffering from neglect.
The West Tennessee nursing home negligence lawyers at the law firm of Bailey & Greer, PLLC have demonstrated their ability to get justice for their clients in Memphis and Jackson who have suffered abuse and neglect at the hands of the caregivers. We investigate your loved one’s allegations and hold the responsible parties liable for your loved one’s injuries.
Bedsores in nursing home residents
Pressure ulcers develop over a period of time in the places on the body that come in contact with the bed or chair or whatever surface the person’s body remains in close contact for many hours on end. Bedsores go through roughly four stages of development, so they are not like an injury that happens when your skin is punctured or sliced by a sharp object.
- Stage one: The skin is reddish and sore and it might feel either more firm or softer than the areas of skin around it.
- Stage two: The skin begins to break open and form an ulcer, which is painful and tender. It might look like a blister and be filled with clear fluid. Even at this point some of the skin may have already begun to die.
- Stage three: The ulcer continues to look worse and a small crater begins to form.
- Stage four: The crater on the pressure ulcer has grown deep enough to reach muscle and bone and it has caused damage to the tissues, tendons and joints.
In stages three and four, if there was any pain in the area of the sore it is likely gone because the skin has been so damaged in that area. This is when significant complications such as bone and blood infections can develop if the pressure ulcers are not treated.
Watch for pressure sores and decubitus ulcers
Because bedsores appear in hidden places that you would not see when you come to visit your loved one, such as on the back of the head, the shoulders, the buttocks and heels, unless you look for them you will never know they are there unless your loved one complains about them. If the resident is non-verbal or immobile, then you have to keep an eye out for bedsores each time you visit if you suspect any kind of neglect.
There are federal regulations that govern the prevention, documentation and treatment of pressure ulcers. On Medicare’s Nursing Home Compare website you can look at rating for nursing homes which tells the percentage of residents that have bedsores and how that percentage compares to the national average.
If you see a bedsore, or pressure ulcer on your loved one’s body, you must bring it to the attention of the nursing home staff. By the time a pressure ulcer forms a crater and begins to get infected it has been forming for weeks or months already. If you see pressure ulcers along with any other signs of nursing home neglect you may be able to take legal action against the nursing home.
At the law firm of Bailey & Greer, we have access to medical specialists who can review your loved one’s medical charts to see what the staff of the medical facility has been doing to prevent or treat the bedsores. We offer a no-obligation consultation at our office in Memphis and Jackson, where you can ask questions about your case and get guidance on the best course of action. If your loved one is too sick or injured to come to us, we will come to you instead.
Schedule a free consultation with our West Tennessee nursing home attorneys
When you have a loved one who has been abused in a nursing home you might be filled with anger and indignation, and you want to make sure that those responsible get what they deserve, but the smart move would be to contact a lawyer first. At Bailey & Greer, PLLC, we fight for the rights of our elders. We have seen the pain and we know the anguish that can come from being abused by caregivers in a nursing home. Our Jackson and Memphis nursing home abuse attorneys offer empathy and compassion as we take on your legal battle. You may call us at 877-819-4144 or fill out our contact form for a free consultation to discuss your case.