How To Spot The Signs Of Bedsores
Rest, sleep, and respite will almost always be your doctor’s orders when recovering from an illness or injury, and residents in nursing homes spend much of their day relaxing. Unfortunately, the physical position an individual assumes in these scenarios means bedsores are likely. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) estimates that up to 91 percent of residents in assisted living had pressure ulcers of varying intensities during the relevant study period. In hospitals, the incidence rate of bedsores ranged from 4 to 38 percent.
For many people, their first experience with bedsores is where a loved one in a nursing home develops wounds, particularly a resident with dementia. Others who are hospitalized or lying prone for long periods develop pressure ulcers themselves, at any age or mental condition. In both scenarios, it is critical to know the signs because they are an indication of negligence. When you can spot the symptoms, you can get proper medical care and discuss legal remedies with a Tampa medical malpractice lawyer.
Symptoms of Pressure Ulcers: There are some signs that only you can sense and should be cause for concern if you are hospitalized and immobile. If you have concerns about a loved one, you can keep an eye out for visible indications of bedsores. Symptoms include:
- Areas of redness and swelling around the backs of feet, ankles, hips, buttocks, and shoulders;
- Red, swollen areas that are warm to the touch and tender, to the point where a resident winces;
- Itching, stinging, and a burning sensation around the affected area;
- Draining of liquid or a pus-like substance;
- An open wound that appears crater-like;
- Blisters and broken blisters; and,
In connection with these symptoms, you should also assess the resident’s level of pain or discomfort. Watch for facial and vocal clues when the person is moving or being moved.
Take Action for Yourself or Others: You are your best advocate if you are a patient in a hospital and suspect that you are developing bedsores. Alert nursing staff during rounds and insist that corrective action be implemented. This may be adding cushioning around areas of your body, making efforts to move you more frequently, and washing skin where a pressure ulcer could develop.
If it is a resident in a nursing home that has developed bedsores, quick action is essential. Pressure ulcers can quickly become infected, leading to life-threatening medical conditions. To protect your loved one:
- Get immediate medical care at the ER, urgent care facility, or hospital;
- Document everything about the bedsores;
- Consider researching new assisted living facilities, as there are serious concerns about negligence when a resident develops pressure ulcers; and,
- Contact a lawyer to discuss your options.
Consult with a Florida Bedsores and Med Mal Attorney About Your Rights
If you or a loved one developed pressure ulcers because of negligent medical care, please contact Greco & Wozniak P.A. to discuss your legal remedies. You can schedule a no-cost case evaluation at our offices in Tampa, FL by calling 813.223.7849 or visiting us online. A medical malpractice lawyer can advise you after reviewing your story.