According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), over 70,000 cases of intracerebral hemorrhage occur every year in the United States. Approximately half of those suffering from the condition are 65 and older. The risk of suffering from intracerebral hemorrhage increases with age. Intracerebral hemorrhage is a type of stroke that can be difficult to treat as well as deadly.
An Overview of Intracerebral Hemorrhage
Intracerebral hemorrhage happens when a diseased blood vessel in the brain bursts and blood leaks out into the brain. If the amount of leaking blood increases fast, pressure can build up in the brain potentially leading to unconsciousness and death. According to the Stroke Center, high blood pressure can cause an intracerebral hemorrhage. Bleeding on the brain can also occur due to trauma, infections, tumors, blood clotting problems, and abnormal blood vessels.
Risk factors for intracerebral hemorrhage can include age, being male, high blood pressure, and the use of alcohol. Some common medical problems, such as hypertension and diabetes, can also increase the risk of intracerebral hemorrhage. Since there is an increase of intracerebral hemorrhage with age, management of high blood pressure in the older population, such as nursing home residents, can help prevent the condition.
There are some other precautions you can take to lower the risk of suffering from bleeding of the brain, for example treating diabetes appropriately, managing and treating heart disease, and eating a healthy diet.
Nursing Home Health
Nursing home residents can have a variety of health conditions that need careful managing with prescription medicines. If, for example, high blood pressure is unrecognized in a nursing home resident, or the staff fail to adjust medications when required, nursing home residents may be at increased risk of medical complications, including intracerebral hemorrhage.
According to the American Diabetes Association, not only do many nursing home residents suffer from diabetes, a substantial proportion of residents may suffer from undetected diabetes. Untreated diabetes can also be one of the risk factors for intracerebral hemorrhage.
Elderly persons suffering from any cardiovascular diseases may be on blood thinner medication. It is crucial that the patient receives the correct dose of blood thinner exactly as directed by a doctor. Taking too little can mean that the medication will not work, and too much can cause external as well as internal bleeding, including intracerebral hemorrhages.
Sometimes, head trauma can also cause bleeding in the brain. Head traumas can happen in a nursing home context due to falls and any resulting injuries to the head.
If your loved one suffered from intracerebral hemorrhage in a nursing home, and staff failed to monitor medical conditions and medications appropriately, the nursing home acted negligently. Nursing homes must ensure that their patients receive the right amount of medication at the time when they should receive it. Not doing so can have deadly consequences for elderly nursing home residents.
Connecting with a nursing home lawyer about your case can be helpful, as you could be entitled to compensation.
The Symptoms of Intracerebral Hemorrhages
Symptoms from a stroke caused by an intracerebral hemorrhage can be different for everyone but may be present before and immediately after the stroke and can include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Severe headache
- Problems with speech
- Numbness and paralysis of the face, arm, or leg on one side of the body
- Vision problems
- Nausea and vomiting
When you observe someone with these symptoms, it is important to act immediately by calling the emergency services or driving the person to the emergency room.
Immediate medical care is crucial for patient survival. Treatment typically involves trying to control the bleeding in the brain and reducing any pressure on the brain caused by the bleeding. If the stroke is serious, emergency surgery can potentially address the bleeding and mend a broken blood vessel.
Unfortunately, hemorrhagic stroke is often deadly. The NCBI states that hemorrhagic stroke has a survival rate of only 26.7% over a period of five years. Long-term survival rates are more favorable for younger patients without any other underlying medical conditions such as diabetes and hypertension.
The Dangers for Nursing Home Residents
Elderly nursing home residents typically suffer from medical conditions that can contribute to developing intracerebral hemorrhages. These conditions, such as hypertension, diabetes, or cardiovascular problems, all need careful managing with appropriate medications. If a nursing home is short-staffed or the staff are not adequately trained, many needs of the elderly residents can go unmet with potentially catastrophic consequences.
The symptoms of hemorrhagic stroke may also go undetected in a nursing home, especially when there is not enough staff to monitor residents around the clock. Untrained staff may think that some of the symptoms of any bleeding on the brain are harmless, or call for medical help when it is too late.
Contact Us Today for Legal Help
If your loved one suffered injuries or death due to a preventable intracerebral hemorrhage, or received medical help too late, you may have a case against a negligent nursing home. We can help, offer advice, and answer any questions you might have. Contact Pintas & Mullins Law Firm today for your free case evaluation.