Nursing Home Neglect Leads To Multiple Bed Sores | Michigan Nursing Home Lawyers
The Winning Wheels nursing home in Prophetstown, Illinois was recently cited by the Illinois Department of Public Health for failing to prevent bed sores on four residents. Due to the bed sore not being properly identified and treated, they progressed into Stage 2 and Stage 3 bed sores.
Winning Wheels is guilty of nursing home neglect by failing to properly identify a bed sore on the foot of one resident before it reached Stage 3. Two other residents developed Stage 2 bed sores that also remained undetected and untreated.
Bed sores develop when residents are unable to move or readjust themselves on their own, are often malnourished or dehydrated, and are left for long periods in wet or unsanitary conditions.
When these conditions are present, bed sores are quick to develop, and until these conditions are rectified, they are difficult or impossible to treat. That’s why bed sores are almost always signs of nursing home neglect.
The Four Stages of Pressure Ulcers
Pressure ulcers and bed sores are an injury to the skin and underlying tissue, they can array from slight reddening of the skin to severe tissue damage and sometimes infection. Infections can turn serious and extend into muscle and bone. The four stages used to describe pressure sores are listed below.
Stage 1: Sores are not open wounds. The skin may be painful, but it has no breaks or tears. The skin appears reddened and does not blanch (lose color briefly when you press your finger on it then remove your finger). In a dark-skinned person, the area may appear to be a different color than the surrounding skin, but it may not look red. Skin temperature is often warmer. And the stage 1 sore can feel either firmer or softer than the area around it.
Stage 2: The skin breaks open, wears away, or forms an ulcer, which is usually tender and painful. The sore expands into deeper layers of the skin. It can look like a scrape, abrasion, blister, or a shallow crater in the skin. Sometimes this stage looks like a blister filled with clear fluid. At this stage, some skin may be damaged beyond repair or may die.
Stage 3: The sore gets worse and extends into the tissue beneath the skin, forming a small crater. Fat may show in the sore, but not muscle, tendon, or bone.
Stage 4: The pressure sore is very deep, reaching into muscle and bone and causing extensive damage. Damage to deeper tissues, tendons, and joints may occur.
During stages 3 and 4, residents can experience little or no pain due to significant tissue damage. Serious complications, such as infection of the bone, like osteomyelitis or blood, like sepsis, can occur if pressure sores progress.
At times, a pressure ulcer or sore does not classify into one of the four stages. In this instance the sore is called a deep tissue injury (DTI). A deep tissue injury occurs when a pressure sore is suspected, but cannot be confirmed. There are also pressure sores that exist where the stage is not clear. In these cases, the base of the sore is covered by a thick layer of other tissue and pus that may be yellow, gray, green, brown, or black. The stage cannot be determined because the base of the sore cannot be seen by the doctor. These sores are classified as “unstageable.”
Sue Michigan Nursing Home For Pressure Ulcers
Patients who suffer bed sores and pressure ulcers at a nursing home or in other medical care facilities do have legal rights. These injuries and conditions are completely preventable with proper nursing practices and medical supervision. Victims, or their family members, should contact our office immediately to discuss their case. Call our office now at (800) 606-1717 to speak with one of our experienced Michigan nursing home neglect lawyers about your case. We will represent you under our No Fee Promise, meaning you do not pay any legal fees until we win or settle your case.