Settings Encouraging Bedsores in Washington DC Nursing Homes 

Bedsores are an innocent-sounding name for what can turn into a wound resulting in amputation or death. While there are settings encouraging bedsores in Washington DC nursing homes, in a well-run facility such ulcers should never develop into a serious issue.

A seasoned bedsores lawyer could help you receive the compensation you deserve for your injury and pain and suffering.

What are Bedsores?

Formally known as decubitus ulcers, bedsores are also known as pressure sores or pressure ulcers. These ulcers form due to constant pressure on the skin and are most common in immobile individuals, such as those confined to bed due to illness, paralysis, or coma. People in wheelchairs may also develop bedsores in areas of the body they cannot move.

It is up to nursing home staff to check patients on a daily basis to look for signs of bedsores, and to shift immobile patients several times daily so that bedsores do not develop.

Common Situations Which Can Result in Bedsores

According to the renowned Merck Manual, the number of hospitalized patients with pressure ulcers increased a whopping 75 percent in the years between 1993 and 2006. It estimates that up to three million U.S. patients currently suffer from bedsores.

While there has been some decline in bedsore rates, it appears these lower numbers involve early-stage bedsores, not the severe wounds that can prove debilitating, deadly and require months or even years of treatment.

Risk factors for pressure ulcers, besides immobility, include skin irritant exposure – especially prevalent for patients dealing with urinary or fecal incontinence; wound healing issues – common in patients with diabetes, venous insufficiency, poor nutrition, and those with impaired sensation.

The latter may not feel the pain associated with bedsores, at least initially. Frail, thin, elderly people are at greatest risk of pressure ulcer development.

Bedsores most often form on bony areas with little muscle or fat. These include:

  • Lower back
  • Back of the neck and head
  • Feet
  • Buttocks
  • Hips
  • Shoulder blades
  • Knees

Any area where there is constant friction between the skin and another surface is a place where a bedsore may develop. Patients with tubes or other equipment next to their skin may experience bedsores in those places.

Besides shifting immobile patients every few hours, nursing home staff should inspect every patient’s skin daily, noting and attending to the early signs of bedsore development, such as redness, warmth, swelling, pain, and fever.

Once the bedsore spreads deeply into the underlying tissue, life-threatening infections may form.

Bedsore Complications

Bedsores become infected easily, and some of the bacteria causing infection are antibiotic-resistant. Common complications of untreated bedsores include:

  • Osteomyelitis – bone death
  • Cellulitis
  • Meningitis
  • Gangrene
  • Squamous cell carcinoma (cancer)
  • Endocarditis
  • Septicemia
  • Septic shock

In some cases, the only way to save a patient with a severely infected bedsore is via amputation of the affected area. That is particularly true if the bedsore affects the feet.

Talk to a DC Attorney Today

If you or a loved one developed bedsores due to lack of care and negligence in a Washington DC nursing home, you need the services of an experienced personal injury lawyer specializing in nursing home abuse. Call us today for a free consultation or contact us online.

There is never an excuse for a patient to develop bedsores while in a nursing home or similar long-term care facility. These painful wounds occur due to a lack of adequate care. Reach out today for more information about settings encouraging bedsores in Washington DC nursing homes.