When you place loved ones in a nursing home, you are seeking a safe place for them to live, enjoying companionship and activities. What you do not expect to find is an unhealthy environment that leads to serious illnesses, such as infections.
Because so many people are living in a single building and in close proximity to each other, infections and diseases can spread quickly. It is important for staff at the nursing home to protect residents from the risk of infections.
If you believe the staff at your loved one’s nursing home did not follow proper procedures in treating an infection, leading to a more serious health situation, you may want to hire a Cicero untreated infections lawyer. The team of attorneys at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm knows how to protect victims and help them receive the compensation they deserve. Call us today.
Understanding Infections in a Nursing Home
Because elderly people living in a nursing home naturally have a weaker immune system than younger people, they are more susceptible to potential infections and significant complications from them.
Because diagnosing infections in the elderly can be more challenging than with younger people, it is important for nursing home staff to closely watch for any signs and begin treatment immediately. Some of the ways infections in elderly people differ from younger people include:
- Fever: 20 to 30 percent of the time fever in the elderly may be absent versus the symptoms a younger person may show.
- Change in mental status: an elderly person with an infection is more likely to have a cognitive impairment change, while a young person would not have a change in mental status.
- Other issues: an elderly person may have a greater risk for a fall, sudden weight loss, or a change in respiratory rate when an infection is present, while a young person would not exhibit these signs.
Defending Your Loved One’s Rights
Staff and medical personnel at a nursing home should receive training in spotting signs of infection, no matter how subtle. Without this training, it is possible for an infection to spread, leading to a far more serious illness than if a diagnosis occurs earlier.
If staff members at the nursing home do not receive adequate training concerning infections, this could be a case of negligence on the part of the nursing home. This means that your loved one could receive compensation for pain and suffering, which may be used to cover the medical cost of treating their infection. You also can file a wrongful death lawsuit on behalf of your loved one, if they passed away from the infection.
A Cicero untreated infections lawyer can study the facts in your loved one’s case. An attorney can determine whether the nursing home followed the proper procedures in diagnosing or treatment of an infection. Call Pintas & Mullins Law Firm for a free consultation.
Common Types of Infections in Elderly Patients
Certain types of infections may appear in people living in a nursing home, as the elderly population is especially susceptible to certain types of infectious diseases.
Seniors naturally undergo changes to their digestive tract as they age. Unfortunately, this may lead to an increased risk of gastrointestinal infections, such as Helicobacter pylori, which often causes nausea and fever, and Clostridium difficile, which often causes diarrhea.
If left untreated, a gastrointestinal infection may lead to long term illnesses like gastritis.
Influenza is a dangerous infection in a nursing home, because victims can spread it through coughing and sneezing. With so many elderly residents near each other in the nursing home, influenza can spread quickly.
Once influenza is present, it can increase the risk of a victim developing pneumonia.
Bacterial pneumonia is an especially dangerous infectious disease for the elderly. It can lead to a reduced lung function, leaving some victims in grave danger and reduce the ability to breathe properly.
With the onset of pneumonia, elderly patients may not have a fever, which is common in younger people. Instead, pneumonia may result in confusion or delirium in an elderly patient.
Skin infections in a nursing home resident can show up in a variety of conditions, including:
- Fungal foot infection.
- Pressure ulcers.
Skin infections do not heal quickly in elderly patients, which makes them particularly dangerous, especially if nursing home staff do not catch them early.
Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections (also called UTIs), represent one of the most common types of infections in elderly people. The use of catheters will increase the possibility of a UTI.
Nursing home staff should watch for signs like urinary incontinence or changes in mental behavior when UTI forms.
For a free legal consultation with a Untreated Infections Lawyer serving Cicero, call (800) 794-0444
A Cicero Untreated Infections Lawyer – Call Us for a Free Consultation
It is important for you to report potential cases of abuse going on in a nursing home. Specifically, if the abuse may lead to an infection or another significant health problem, you need to report it. You can report abuse to the administration of the nursing home, law enforcement, and Adult Protective Services in Illinois.
Consider hiring a Cicero untreated infections lawyer. We know how to stand up for the rights of victims of abuse or neglect in a nursing home. We will work to show that the facts in the case point toward negligence on the part of the nursing home. Your loved one may be eligible to receive awards for medical bills and pain and suffering related to their injury.
Pintas & Mullins Law Firm does not shy away from accepting tough cases. Call us today for a free consultation. We work on a contingency basis, we receive no compensation unless your case is won.