Bedsores are painfully, and potentially dangerous, injuries that are often a sign of nursing home abuse. Learning how to spot bedsores is one way you can protect your loved one from nursing home abuse. Contacting our Louisville elder abuse attorney is another way you can protect a loved one when you suspect nursing home abuse.
What Are Bedsores?
A bedsore is the name commonly used to refer to a pressure ulcer or pressure sore. Bedsores are injuries to the tissues under the skin. These sores develop because of prolonged pressure on the skin. Bedsores often appear on areas of the body that are “bony” such as the ankles, hips, tailbone, and heels. However, bedsores can appear anywhere on the body.
The people that are at the highest risk for bedsores are individuals who have limited mobility. For example, a person who has a medical condition, such as paralysis or a back injury, that prevents the person from changing positions. People who are confined to wheelchairs and beds for long periods have a high risk of developing bedsores.
Signs and Symptoms of Bedsores
According to the Mayo Clinic, there are four stages for bedsores. The following symptoms describe each of the four stages of a bedsore:
- Stage I – The skin may appear red and doesn’t lighten when touched. On people with darker skin, the bedsore may appear discolored. The skin is not broken, but the site may be painful and tender. The area may also be cool or warm compared to the skin surrounding the area.
- Stage II – The bedsore may appear to look like a ruptured or fluid-filled blister and be pinkish or red in color. The outer layer and underlying layer of skin have been damaged by Stage II.
- Stage III – By Stage III, the bedsore is a deep wound that usually exposes some of the fatty tissue because of the loss of skin. The sore appears crater-like, and the bottom of the wound may appear yellowish because of the dead tissue. The damage may extend outside of the primary wound by Stage III.
- Stage IV – By Stage IV, we typically see extensive loss of tissue with bone, tendons, or muscle exposed. The dead tissue at the bottom of the wound may appear yellowish or dark and crusty. The damage usually extends beyond the wound now.
For more information about the signs and symptoms of bedsores, visit the Mayo Clinic’s website or contact your family physician.
Contact Our Louisville Elder Abuse Attorney for More Information
Nursing home patients are at a high risk for bedsores if the staff does not take precautions to prevent these injuries. When a resident is unable to reposition himself or move without assistance, the staff must regularly move the patient to avoid bedsores from forming. Without proper care, your loved one could suffer a painful and dangerous injury.
If you suspect your loved one is the victim of abuse, our Louisville elder abuse attorney can help. Contact the Shelton Law Group by calling 1-888-761-7204 or by using our online contact form. Our attorneys offer free case evaluations and free legal consultations for victims and their families. We want you to have the information you need to protect your loved one from abuse without worrying about paying a consultation fee.