Alan D. Bell Attorney at Law
Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Civil Trial Attorney
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If your loved one has bed sores, it could be nursing home abuse

You likely put a lot of time, energy and thought into finding the right nursing home for your parents or other aging loved one(s). After all, you want to ensure that your loved ones receives proper care and have a good standard of living during those precious final years.

Sadly, no matter how great a nursing home's reputation may be, it only takes one bad worker or manager to cause serious injuries to your loved one living at the facility. Sometimes, a simple lack of staff could lead to inadequate care. You should be on the lookout for signs of serious issues and try to be an advocate for the treatment of your loved one.

Bed sores are not inevitable

One of the early symptoms of nursing home abuse or neglect that often gets overlooked is the development of bed sores. Many people are under the mistaken impression that non-mobile people will inevitably develop bed sores because they can't move.

The truth is that with adequate care and monitoring, bed sores can be easily prevented. Your loved one doesn't have to suffer or have his or her health endangered by infections that often accompany bed sores. If you notice a sore forming, you should address it immediately. Failing to do so could leave your loved one in a lot of pain and at risk for a serious infection.

Bed sores worsen over time

Bed sores, which are also called pressure ulcers, develop because of ongoing pressure on certain points of the body. For those who are bedridden or contained to a room, these sores present a very real risk. They most commonly form in areas where the body's weight presses down into the bed, including on the back of the head and shoulders, the lower back, the buttocks, the sides of the hips, the back of the heels and the elbows.

During the initial Stage 1, bed sores are nothing more than red or inflamed-looking areas. The skin becomes irritated and painful. Bed sores should get caught at this point, and steps should get taken to stop their progression. If they continue to develop, Stage 2 is when the skin breaks or an ulcer forms, affecting the deep layers of the skin. The area becomes quite tender and painful, and it may look like a scrape or a blister.

Stage 3 is when the bed sore begins to impact deeper tissue, other than just skin. Fat may be visible in the sore, and the injury may form an indentation in the skin. In Stage 4, the bed sore is quite deep, impacting muscle and even bone. Pain sensation begins to decrease in these last two stages, as local nerves may get damaged.

If you believe your loved one is developing bed sores, talk to nursing home staff. If they fail to act, you may require legal help to get adequate care for your loved one. If possible, consider locating a new facility where the bed sores can get treated and future sores will be prevented.

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Alan D. Bell
650 Bloomfield Avenue, Suite 105
Bloomfield, NJ 07003

Phone: 973-233-4291
Phone: 973-743-7070

Top One, The National Trial Lawyers Top 100 Trial Lawyers, New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Attorney - seal of the supreme court of New Jersey, AV LexisNexis Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rated for ethical standards and legal ability, Lead Counsel LC Rated