Bruises and Bedsores

DATELINE WOODSIDE, NY  "It began with the bruising.

It progressed to bedsores so severe that hospitalization was necessary."

Allen was speaking to his boss at the software development firm where he worked.

"And things just got horribly worse from there.

"I'm going to need to take a few weeks off to get her affairs in order."

"I'm so sorry, Allen. Do you want me to get Terry on the phone so you can rework your scrum schedule?" Allen was lucky to have an understanding employer.

"Man, I haven't had time to focus on all that. Do you think we can schedule a meeting for sometime Wednesday afternoon? I have a meeting to discuss what happened to her with the doctor."

"If you don't mind me asking . . . "

"Oh, listen. I'm happy to talk about it. This shouldn't have happened. Thing is that these bedsores are bad enough, but it's the complications that made this so bad for Mom," said a now animated Allen.

"You've heard of sepsis, right? Well, an FAQ at the Mayo Clinic explained it to me when Googled it. The bedsore allowed bacteria into her bloodstream. From there it spread throughout her body. She got worse, and in just a few days, it caused organ failure."

"I had no idea. I guess you don't know about these things until you're in the situation."

"True enough," Allen said. "But the nursing home is supposed to be on top of these things. They're supposed to be the experts. According to her doctor the bedsore should’ve never started in the first place. Worse, once it started they did not care for the wound properly.  There were supposed to take care of my Mom and they didn't.  . . Simple as that."


What happened to Allen’s Mom in a nursing home is not uncommon.

Nursing home abuse often manifests itself in injuries such as bed sores or pressure ulcers that can ultimately be traced to negligent nursing home care. The causes of these bedsores or pressure ulcers require investigation, a study of medical records, and plenty of question-asking. A nursing home should be a safe place for patients, but sadly patients suffer bedsores or pressure ulcers due to negligent nursing home care. If your loved one has suffered an injury or death while under the care of a nursing home, you and your loved one may have legal recourse.

How will you know whether your loved one’s bedsore or pressure ulcer was caused by negligent nursing home care?

Often the first indication comes from indications of pain or discomfort coming from your loved one. An unexpected visit to the emergency room is also cause to suspect negligent nursing home care.

Ask questions. What caused the bedsore? When did it start? When did the nursing home staff discover the bedsore?

Allen’s Mom was likely at risk for skin breakdown such as bedsores or pressure ulcers. The nursing home staff was required to turn and reposition her body to reduce pressure so that bedsores or pressure ulcers do not develop and /or worsen.

The failure of the nursing home staff to prevent a bedsore or pressure ulcer likely occurred because the nursing home was not monitoring her properly due to inadequate and short staffing. This type of negligent nursing home care violates a nursing home resident’s rights.

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Gathering evidence in today's environment requires a clear understanding of the rules, plus the possible role of electronic medical records and expert witnesses.