What are bedsores?
Bedsores are sores caused by pressure on the skin in bony areas. They usually affect those who are bedridden or in a wheelchair for long periods. Bedsores often appear on ankles, heels, buttocks, hips, lower back, or shoulders. These pressure points start out as a red mark. If left untreated the decrease in blood flow can damage the tissue in these spots.
What should I do?
If you notice or suspect bedsores, get treatment right away. Notify a nurse or doctor at the nursing home or hospital. Make sure they take your concerns seriously. Follow up and ask questions. Bedsores can be dangerous if left untreated. The skin can wear away, causing infection. In extreme cases, surgery is required. Bedsores can even be life threatening.
Why did this happen?
Bedsores are a sign of patient neglect. They can and should be prevented by moving the patient often, and keeping their bed clean and dry. There are special support mattresses designed to relieve pressure on sensitive areas. The patient should also be kept well nourished.
Should I sue?
If your loved one has suffered from bedsores and you suspect neglect, you may be wondering whether you can sue. An experienced attorney can help you decide. They've seen these cases before and know what needs to be proven in order to win. Contact an attorney in your area -- someone who focuses their practice on nursing home abuse/neglect, or medical malpractice -- and ask for an initial consultation.