What are Bedsores and Pressure Sores?
Bedsores and pressure sores are a type of ulcer that first develops in the skin as the result of pressure being put on the skin from a person’s body weight over time, combined with the decreased blood flow to skin and surrounding tissue. The more bony areas of the body – such as tailbones, elbows, heels, and elbows – are the most common areas where pressure sores occur.
If left untreated, these ulcers can significantly increase in size, and can expand and cause the skin to crack, exposing muscle and tissue. They can also become infected, and lead to blood diseases such as sepsis, which can be fatal.
How Are Bedsores and Pressure Sores Caused?
Bedsores and pressure sores are caused as the result of prolonged pressure on certain spots of the body caused by immobility. Those at high risk of developing pressure sores include those who cannot easily move themselves, including seniors, those suffering from paralysis, and those who may be comatose or who have suffered from other injuries resulting in immobility.
During even a short period of time, the combination of tissue not receiving sufficient blood supply from the pressure and friction on the skin can cause pressure sores to develop. Pressure sore are especially likely to develop in those who have thin skin and poor circulation.
Are Bedsores Avoidable?
In most cases, yes. There are a very limited number of medical conditions in which bedsores and pressure sores are deemed medically unavoidable, but outside of these rare conditions, bedsores and pressure sores should not occur.
As a result, nursing homes and long-term care facilities will typically be liable when bedsores and pressure sores develop.
How Can Bedsores or Pressure Sores be Avoided?
For those who cannot move or turn their body on their own so that their body is not in the same position, the assistance of a caregiver or caregivers are needed to rotate the person’s body at regular intervals determined by a medical professional. Caregivers must ensure that this schedule is carefully followed, as those in poor health can begin to develop pressure sores in a matter of hours. In addition, there are a number of products that can often be used to help prevent pressure sores, such as special cushions that can be used by those in wheelchairs.
Holding Nursing Homes Accountable for Bedsores and Pressure Sores
The trauma of bedsores and pressure sores can be horrendous. Painful ulcers, exposed muscle and tissue, the surgeries that sometimes are required, and the unfortunate deaths that sometimes result because of infection can be deadly to those who are elderly and not in good health.
As with many other cases of nursing home negligence, bedsores and pressure sores are often the result of understaffing and attempts to put profits over resident welfare. We believe that the only way to get negligent nursing homes to put resident welfare first is through holding them accountable for the injury and death that they cause.
Call Us For a Free Consultation – No Fees Unless Compensation is Recovered
We offer a free consultation so that you can find out how we can help. Once we learn about your case, we can explain your options.
As bedsore and pressure sore lawyers, we provide full-service, contingent fee representation. This means that we advance the costs of litigation on behalf of clients after a case is accepted (these costs are then paid from a settlement or award), and we are only entitled to a fee if we are successful in securing compensation.