Bed sores have many names, including pressure sores, pressure ulcers, and decubitus ulcers. These wounds occur when someone is bedridden and pressure is placed on parts of the body. Bed sores are most likely to affect the heels, back of the head, elbows, hips, backs, and shoulders, because these are the areas of the body that come into direct contact with a bed when someone is laying down.
Bed sores unfortunately affect the most vulnerable. Nursing home patients, residents of assisted living facilities, patients in comas, bedridden patients, quadriplegic individuals, and people with severe mobility issues are most likely to be affected. Any time that someone is bedridden for an extended period of time, the risk of pressure ulcers is there.
More Deadly Than you Think
Many people think of bedsores as “minor” injuries that can heal. The problem is that these injuries are more serious than most realize. In some cases, patients need to be admitted to a hospital to treat bedsores. If left untreated, bed sores get worse and worse. Serious, untreated bed sores can become infected and can lead to life-threatening infections of the blood, tissue, or bone of the patient.
In fact, some statistics suggest that 34,319 people die from bed sores each year, or about 7 percent of those who develop bed sores. And these injuries are more common than many realize. The CDC reports that 2- 28% of nursing home residents across the country develop bedsores while other statistics suggest that as many as one million people across the United States develop serious bed sores each year.
Since they affect the most vulnerable, bed sores can be especially deadly. When someone is already ill due to a serious injury or medical condition, they may simply not be able to easily fight off an infection or heal easily from a bed sore.
A Sign of Neglect
If a loved one develops bed sores, you might wonder whether the condition was caused by medical negligence or nursing home negligence in Hollywood or your Florida community. The reality is that bed sores are preventable. They can be prevented by:
- Frequent changes in the position of a patient or resident
- Added pillows or cushions to relieve pressure on the hips, heels, or other at-risk areas
- Frequent changes of pillows and bed linens
When pressure sores are allowed to worsen, especially, this can be a sign of neglect, especially if they go untreated. Any time that you see a loved one affected by bed sores, you will want to ask questions because these injuries are very preventable. Be alert for other signs of neglect and abuse and consider contacting a Florida personal injury lawyer to discuss your situation. You and your family may qualify for compensation that can help you or your loved one recover more fully from their pressure ulcer injury.
Have you or a family member suffered from an injury or serious bedsores in a hospital, nursing home, assisted living situation, or other facility? Would you like to explore your legal options and find out what your rights are? To arrange a free consultation with the legal team at Flaxman Law Group, contact our caring law firm to schedule your appointment.