WHO IS AT RISK FROM BED SORES OR PRESSURE ULCERS?
The causes and risk factors of bed sores or pressure ulcers are well known to the medical and nursing professions. That is why if you or a relative suffer a bed sore or a pressure sore in a Nursing or Care Home or Hospital the matter should be fully investigated to assess if a claim for compensation for the period of pain and discomfort should be made. It is only by authorities or nursing home owners being called to account for these injuries that the problem will be lessened.
What Causes Pressure Sores or Ulcers?
Generally speaking this is a problem of age and disability. Pressure sores are caused to people who by illness disability or injury are immobile for long periods of time.
Pressure sores or bed ulcers are caused by extra pressure being concentrated over patches of skin. This is normally by the weight of the body and the subsequent lack of blood supply means that normal nutrients and oxygen are denied to the area.
Who is most at Risk of developing bed sores?
- Those immobile who have no capacity to move themselves without help
- Hospital Patients or Nursing or Care Home residents who have nerve damage and cannot feel pain over the affected areas where the pressure sores and ulcers develop. A classic example of this is high blood sugar leading to damage to the nerves of the feet leaving them particularly prone to pressure sores
- People who have poor control of their bladder or bowels
- People who suffer from malnutrition bad diet or nutritional deficiency are more likely to suffer bed sores
- Those recovering from major injuries such as a fracture to the hip bone in an elderly person
- Patients who have previously suffered a pressure sore or bed ulcer are statistically more likely to suffer from the same problem again.
What Do I do If a loved one or a relative suffers a bed or pressure sore or ulcer?
The first priority is to get a medical asessment and appropriate treatment. However this can be made more difficult if you suspect the sores may be due to negligence, as you may be understandably cautious that reporting this to the repsonsible person may make the situation worse. We would advise that you seek advice as quickly as possible. See our guide on what to do if you suspect medical negligence or abuse has occurred.
Get specialist legal advice
If you suspect negligence then you should seek legal advice as quickly as possible as the evidence to show what has happened needs to be gathered quickly to maximise the possibility of the claim succeeding. Not every pressure sore or bed ulcer will necessarily mean that compensation can be claimed, it will depend on the care offered, the plans made to avoid bed sores occurring and other factors that will need to be properly assessed by a Solicitor experienced in this field.