Pressure ulcers, also known as bedsores, are too common for people in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Stage IV pressure ulcers are the most severe form and typically occur when preventative actions were not taken over time. While the causes and risk factors differ, prevention methods are typically the same for all people.
If a loved one has developed Stage IV pressure ulcers, you can expect a long and difficult recovery. At that point, getting a bedsore lawyer in Suffolk County involved is an ideal option. Medical costs can become elevated quickly, and you could be entitled to compensation. We’ve taken a closer look at how pressure ulcers develop, what causes them, common risk factors, preventive measures, and more.
How Stage IV Pressure Ulcers Develop
Pressure ulcers typically develop similarly in patients. They begin when an elderly or injured person cannot reposition themselves on their own in the bed and bedsores develop as a result. When pressure is put on a specific area for long periods of time, blood supply can be cut off to the skin and bedsores begin developing. What starts as skin redness can turn into blisters, skin damage, and even tissue loss. Stage IV pressure ulcers are when tissue loss occurs and bones or muscles could be exposed, which elevates the risk of infection. This is when serious medical intervention is required and a NY bedsore attorney should be notified.
Risk Factors For Stage IV Pressure Ulcers
Anyone who develops a bedsore in the early stages is at risk of Stage IV development if proper treatments are not administered. However, certain conditions can lead to a higher risk of developing pressure ulcers, including:
- Fragile skin
- Limited mobility
- Poor nutrition
Since elderly people in nursing homes typically have at least one risk factor, they are more prone to developing pressure ulcers. But no matter how high risk levels are for nursing home residents, bedsores are easily preventable. As such, a bedsore lawyer in Brooklyn, NY can often help you receive compensation to offset medical bills due to negligence of nursing home staff.
Can Stage IV Pressure Ulcers Be Treated?
Nursing home staff should treat bedsores promptly. Of course, if the bedsores reach Stage IV, then proper treatment was not administered quickly enough. Once Stage IV is reached, it’s critical to prevent the wound from getting infected. Proper dressing and removing dead tissue are essential to prevent the bedsore from getting worse. At this stage, antibiotics should be administered and nursing home staff should prioritize relieving pressure from the affected area. Treatment for Stage IV pressure ulcers can be expensive, but a bedsore lawyer in Suffolk County can help you recover most of the costs.
Best Prevention Methods For Stage IV Pressure Ulcers
When nursing home staff is proactive, they can usually prevent bedsores. And Stage IV pressure ulcers should be easily prevented. Some of the most common practices nursing homes should do include:
- Replacing bedding regularly
- Repositioning the patient frequently
- Evaluating the patient’s skin thoroughly
- Ensuring proper cushions are used
- Moisturizing the skin when necessary
- Keeping the skin dry and clean
While these prevention methods should seem simple enough, the reality is too many nursing homes neglect to prioritize them. And when that happens, pressure ulcers can increase to Stage IV levels quickly. The fact that serious pressure ulcers are so preventable makes it much easier to take legal action since a good NY bedsore attorney can typically pinpoint negligent practices.
Complications Of Untreated Pressure Ulcers
With the potential for bone and muscle to be exposed at the Stage IV level of pressure ulcers, plenty of complications could arise. Some of the most serious types of infections can include meningitis, endocarditis, and bacteremia. Septic shock and sepsis are also possible complications. Sepsis occurs when the body reacts harshly to a major infection. Blood pressure could drop rapidly and when septic shock occurs, major organs could stop functioning. Once these complications occur, death is a possibility if they are not treated quickly enough. It’s critical to have a bedsore lawyer in Brooklyn, NY get involved as early as possible so nursing home staff will take treatments and prevention methods more seriously.
Pursue Compensation Through A NY Bedsore Attorney
Stage IV pressure ulcers can be extremely dangerous. If your loved one gets to Stage IV, then it’s clear they have not been properly cared for in recent weeks or months. Nursing home staff should spring into action to prevent major complications. A lot of the damage has already been done, though, and serious financial burdens are associated with treatment.
When it comes to bedsores and pressure ulcers, working with a reputable NY bedsore attorney is very important. They know how to pinpoint negligence from nursing home staff and what they do to try to hide their negligence. Get an attorney involved as soon as possible and serious complications might be preventable.
Sinel & Olesen, PLLC has worked on numerous negligence cases regarding nursing homes in the past. Bedsores are very preventable, yet they are also too common for nursing home residents. We understand all of the tactics nursing homes do to make it look like they had nothing to do with bedsore development in patients. And without representation from an experienced NY bedsore attorney, you could be on the hook for significant medical costs. If you suspect the nursing home your loved one is staying in is not providing proper care, reach out to us today for a free case evaluation before it’s too late.
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What causes bedsores and pressure sores?
People develop bed sores when they don’t receive adequate medical attention. This results in an open wound and irritated skin patches that are caused by friction or unrelieved/prolonged pressure.
Although a bed sore can develop almost anywhere, the most common areas of the body to develop them are:
- the backside
- the buttocks
- the head
Can I sue for bedsores?
Why are some people at risk for bedsores or pressure sores?
Anyone who relies on heathcare staff to reposition them is at greater risk since failure to do this can cause bedsores to develop.
Even for elderly and immobile patients, bedsores are completely preventable if the staff uses proper precautions and ensures that residents receive adequate care.