Chicago Bedsore Claims Attorney
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Bruises and other marks commonly evidence nursing home abuse. If someone you love is in a nursing home and is suffering from bruises or other common abuse symptoms, contact our Chicago nursing home abuse lawyers today – we investigate and handle claims nationwide. Our team at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm is passionate about fighting those responsible for nursing home injuries and has resolved 10,000+ cases for injury victims over our collective 50 years of practice. Let our Illinois injury firm review your claim today. Call us at (888) 444-9136 or complete an online contact form.
Bedsores / Pressure Sores Can Be Devastating To Your Loved Ones
Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, are a condition that results from prolonged pressure on vulnerable parts of human skin. Pressure sores are unfortunately common among nursing home residents and individuals who use supportive devices such as wheelchairs or braces of some sort. The sores appear on areas of the skin that are under constant pressure.
What Causes Bedsores?
A bedsore can be detected early by inspecting patients frequently and paying close attention to high-risk regions of the body.
Sores develop most easily on areas of skin that are close to the bone, such as:
- Shoulder blades
These areas are prone to the sores because there is little to no padding between the bones and the skin. A sore forms when skin is deprived of needed nutrients and blood flow for a prolonged period of time. If a person is lying in a bed in the same position for a lengthy period of time, without much movement, they are likely to develop a bedsore.
How Can I Inspect a Patient for Bedsores?
You can inspect a patient for potential sores by looking at their skin. There are four stages of severity. At any of these stages, sores need to be immediately treated to prevent more serious consequences.
Here's what to look for:
- Early on, pressure sores may cause slight discoloration of the skin, a noticeable temperature difference from the rest of the skin, and some firmness. These symptoms might indicate a stage 1 sore.
- If skin is broken in any way, the sore may be stage 2.
- Absence of significant layers of skin is characteristic of stage 3 sores.
- Total loss of skin from the surface to the bones or muscles is associated with stage 4 sores.
What You Should Know About Treatment Plans for Pressure Sores
To develop a treatment plan, caretakers will need to consider many factors such as:
- The patient's nutrition
- Their ability to be mobile
- The level of care they have access to
- The level of discomfort the patient is experiencing
All of these factors can play a role in the severity of the sore. From this point, caretakers should develop a customized treatment plan and they should communicate it to the patient if possible. If a patient is unable to be aware of his or her own needs, it is even more critical for the treatment plan to be communicated to everyone involved in the caretaking process.
While bedsores are very preventable, they are extremely difficult to get rid of. Depending on the severity of the sore, different treatment tactics may be appropriate. For an individual with a sore from a wheelchair or similar device, the patient needs to shift positions approximately every 15 minutes. A patient in a bed only needs to adjust positions approximately every two hours.
There are different methods for assisting people with the necessary movements, such as:
- Guided instruction
- Use of leverage devices
- One-on-one assistance
Preventing sores may be relatively simple, but once they form, treatment can be quite complicated. A physician or even a skin care specialist will be best able to determine the necessary degree of treatment. Treatment can range from topical bandaging to invasive surgery. If the proper course of action is not taken, patients are then predisposed to serious illness and death. Patients face death if the sore is so serious that it causes sepsis, an infection in the bloodstream.
Our Award-Winning Nursing Home Injury Lawyers Can Help
Ultimately, bedsores present a serious risk that needs to be addressed immediately. Without proper care, bedsores can cause a patient to quickly deteriorate from fair to poor health. The best thing you can do to help someone who is at risk for developing a sore is to be diligent about the quality of his or her care. Talk with them or treatment professionals about moving them often, and follow through by inspecting them for sores if you have legitimate reasons to doubt the care they are receiving.
If at any time you or a loved one suffers from a bedsore, you may have a legal remedy for the situation. Get in touch with an experienced nursing home abuse lawyer quickly to learn about the legal avenues available to you. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm at (888) 444-9136 for a free case evaluation with a Chicago nursing home injury attorney.