Pressure Ulcers are Preventable
Pressure ulcers and decubitus ulcers, sometimes referred to as bedsores, are a result of pressure on the skin reducing blood flow in the area. Without the appropriate blood flow, the skin dies and an ulcer may form.
Pressure ulcers and decubitus ulcers are major medical complications that should not occur. In fact, Medicare refers to them as a “never event.” Essentially, this means that Medicare will not pay for medical services for a pressure ulcer or decubitus ulcer.
Most times, pressure ulcers and decubitus ulcers are the direct result of neglectful medical care. In other words, if any patient is not sufficiently turned, moved or cushioned in a nursing home, hospital or other sedentary setting, they will eventually form a pressure ulcer on areas such as the buttocks, elbow, hips, heels, ankles, shoulders, back and the head. Pressure ulcers are grouped by their severity in Stages I through Stage IV. Once a Stage IV ulcer occurs, it becomes so deep that there is damage to the muscle and bone and, often times, results in very severe infections.
When visiting a loved one in a nursing home or long-term hospital setting, it is important that the patient’s body be repeatedly examined and pay special attention to the areas where pressure ulcers often form. Look for a reddened area that, when pressed, does not turn white. Also look for blisters, sores or craters or other skin breakdown.
If you or a family member have been a victim of a pressure ulcer or a decubitus ulcer, contact the law firm of Patberg Law Firm to discuss a potential nursing home or hospital claim.