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Atlanta, Georgia Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers - Bed Sores / Pressure Sores / Pressure Ulcers / Decubitus Ulcers

Unfortunately, as Atlanta Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers, we have seen the devastating affects an untreated bedsore can have on the elderly.  Also known as Pressure Sores, Pressure Ulcers and Decubitus Ulcers; Bedsores occur when prolonged pressure is placed on the skin.  Bedsores are especially likely to develop on the heel, ankles, buttocks, hips or other bony areas of the body and can cause a number of symptoms including fluid-filled blisters, deep wounds and significant pain.  Unfortunately, bedsores can develop quickly on those who are bedridden or who spend a significant portion of their life in bed or in a wheelchair, and can be difficult to treat once they have developed.

Bedsores can be prevented by frequent repositioning, by protecting vulnerable areas of the body, by taking proper care of the skin through adequate bathing and grooming, and by using specialized devices such as press-release wheelchairs, supportive mattresses and special cushions.  Unfortunately, some neglectful and abusive nursing homes fail to take proper steps to prevent the development of bedsores, leading to significant discomfort for patients.

If you or a loved one has developed bedsores as a result of neglectful nursing home care, you have legal rights.  An Atlanta nursing home abuse lawyer can help you to take action against the nursing home and recover compensation for losses including the costs of treating the bedsores as well as compensation for pain and suffering and emotional distress.

The Dangers of Bed Sores or Decubitus Ulcers

According to the Mayo Clinic, bedsores, which are also referred to as pressure sores, pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers, can be classified into four stages depending on the severity of the problem:
  • In Stage I, pressure sores or pressure ulcers have just begun to develop. The skin will still be intact but may appear red, ashen, bluish or purple. The skin will not lighten briefly when touched, and the affected areas may be painful and may differ in firmness and temperature from surrounding skin.
  • In Stage II, the pressure ulcer develops into an open wound. The outer layer of skin is lost or damaged and either a shallow wound or a fluid-filled blister is apparent.
  • In Stage III, the pressure ulcer progresses to a deep wound. Fat is exposed due to skin loss and the wound becomes deep and crater like. Yellowish dead tissue is often visible at the bottom of the wound.
  • In Stage IV, a large-scale loss of tissue occurs. Muscles, bones and tendons may be exposed. The wound affects layers of healthy skin and there is dead tissue in the bottom.
Getting rid of bedsores once they develop, especially when they progress to later stages, is very difficult.  Treatment methods may include the use of surgical or mechanical debridement to remove damaged tissue, as well as surgical repair of the damaged area.  Pain management, antibiotics and regular cleaning will generally be required.   Complications, which include sepsis, cellulitis, bone and joint infection and cancer that develops in non-healing wounds, can be even more difficult to treat and in some cases can be fatal.

Getting Help from an Atlanta Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

When bedsores occur because of a nursing home’s careless or abusive behavior, the nursing home should be responsible for all costs associated with treatment.  The nursing home should also be obligated to compensate the victim for his pain and suffering, and if the bedsores lead to fatal complications, the nursing home should have to compensate family members for the loss of their loved one.

Taking action against a nursing home can be a complicated process.  As such, it is important that you consult with an experienced nursing home abuse lawyer so that your legal rights are protected and you obtain the compensation you deserve.  At Sammons & Carpenter, we understand how emotionally difficult nursing home abuse and neglect cases can be.  We treat every client with the respect they deserve, and advocate passionately for the rights of every senior affected by nursing home abuse.  Give our Atlanta nursing home abuse lawyers a call today at (404) 991-5950 or fill out our online contact form for more information about how we can help.

Copyright © 2013 by Sammons & Carpenter, P.C.