Bedsores are painful wounds that occur to someone after they have experienced prolonged periods of pressure on a single area. This may be problematic as it can lead to an array of further health problems. Although an unfortunate symptom that occurs in many bedridden patients, caretakers have a responsibility to prevent bedsores from happening. To reach out to a California elder abuse attorney concerned with neglectful caretakers, reach out to Joel Bryant today.
The Development of Bedsores in the Elderly
Elderly individuals represent a population that suffers from bed sores more than any other group of people. Due to their inability to properly move and adjust themselves, bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, become a much more common occurrence. These types of injuries are caused when there has been a prolonged amount of pressure on a single spot or area. Those with limited self-mobility should be of primary concern when turning patients to prevent pressure ulcers.
- Stage 1 – The first stage of pressure ulcers is when the wound caused by a bedsore has not yet broken through the skin. Most often, these can be identified by a deep red or purple discoloration of the skin on points of contact with the bed. The injury may already be firm and sore to the touch at this stage.
- Stage 2 – Stage two is an easy stage to identify as it is just when the ulcer has opened as a wound, exposing the dermis below the top layer of skin. They are open and relatively shallow ulcers, yet very painful. Victims at this stage may even have a fever.
- Stage 3 – With exposure to fatty tissue, pressure ulcers have developed to stage three. This stage will produce discharge, including pus and drainage, being accompanied by a foul odor. From this stage, the wound will take one to four months to heal.
- Stage 4 – Fourth stage bedsores are extremely dangerous and may take years to heal. They are extremely deep holes in the skin, often showing muscle and occasionally bone. Stage four pressure ulcers may require surgery and should be immediately attended to by a doctor. Much of the tissue may be necrotic and black at this stage.
The Role of Abuse and Neglect in Bedsore Development
As previously mentioned, bedsores are extremely common in elderly folk as they are often limited in their mobility and rely on caretakers. Neglect or intentional abuse often leads to this complication as nursing home staff unwilling to regularly turn elderly residents run the risk of pressure ulcers.
This may be highly concerning to those such as relatives of the elderly. Oftentimes, families are unable to provide constant care to senior relatives as work, school, and a myriad of other factors get in the way. It is for this reason that California elder abuse attorneys such as Joel Bryant step up to the plate. With more and more senior citizens suffering at the hands of negligent caretakers, a tried and trusted lawyer is needed. Call our office as soon as possible at (619) 597-2577 for immediate assistance with your case.