Nursing homes are sanctuaries meant to provide care, dignity, and respect to our elderly loved ones. However, the stark reality of abuse and neglect within some of these facilities can lead to devastating injuries, turning places of refuge into environments of harm.
Recognizing the types of nursing home abuse is a critical responsibility for families, often acting as the voice for those who cannot speak for themselves.
This comprehensive guide delves into the various indicators of nursing home negligence, outlining essential steps for families to take action and seek justice.
Understanding Common Nursing Home Abuse Injuries
Also known as bedsores or decubitus ulcers, pressure sores are injuries to skin and underlying tissue resulting from prolonged pressure on the skin. They typically occur on skin that covers bony areas such as the heels, ankles, hips, and tailbone. Pressure sores are a clear sign of neglect, indicating that a resident has been left in one position for too long without proper care.
Falls Resulting in Broken Bones
Falls can be catastrophic, leading to broken bones and severe injuries. Elderly individuals are at a higher risk due to mobility and balance issues, but a fall often indicates inadequate supervision or environmental hazards within the facility.
Traumatic brain injuries, including brain bleeds, can result from falls, physical abuse, or hitting the head against a hard surface. These injuries can have long-term cognitive and physical effects on the elderly.
Unexplained Broken Bones
Broken bones that have no clear explanation or occur frequently suggest rough handling, physical abuse, or a dangerously unsafe environment.
Significant Weight Loss
Rapid or significant weight loss in nursing home residents can indicate malnutrition or depression, often resulting from neglect or emotional abuse.
Sepsis is a life-threatening reaction to an infection. It can occur when caregivers ignore infections or when there is poor hygiene in the facility.
Amputation might result from severe, untreated infections or complications of diabetes. Neglecting to provide proper medical care can lead to such drastic outcomes.
Choking deaths can occur from neglect, such as failing to monitor eating, not following dietary restrictions, or leaving residents unattended.
Errors in medication—either through the wrong dosage, the wrong medication, or missed doses—can lead to serious health complications or death.
Patient Wandering out of the Facility
Known as elopement, this occurs when a patient leaves the facility unsupervised, often due to inadequate security measures or lack of staff attention, leading to potential harm or even death.
Sexual Assault & Abuse
Sexual assault within nursing homes is a grievous violation, often perpetrated by caregivers or other residents in the absence of proper supervision.
Acts of violence against residents, either by staff or other residents, are clear signs of a facility failing to provide a safe environment.
Wheelchair Transfer Injuries
Injuries during transfer from bed to wheelchair or vice versa may occur if staff are improperly trained or if the facility is understaffed.
Pneumonia and Aspiration Pneumonia
Pneumonia is common in elderly residents but can be prevented with proper care. Aspiration pneumonia occurs when food, saliva, liquids, or vomit is breathed into the lungs, indicating possible neglect in monitoring and assistance during meals.
Infections and Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
Frequent infections, including UTIs, can indicate poor hygiene practices or neglect in providing basic care.
In the most tragic cases, the culmination of neglect or abuse can lead to the untimely death of a loved one, warranting immediate legal action.
Taking Action: The Role of Skilled Nursing Home Abuse Lawyers
When faced with the suspicion or evidence of nursing home abuse, it’s crucial to act swiftly. Our team of skilled nursing home abuse lawyers is equipped with the knowledge, experience, and compassion to navigate these complex cases. Through meticulous investigation and dedicated advocacy, we strive to uncover the truth, hold responsible parties accountable, and secure the justice and compensation your loved one deserves.
Initiating Your Investigation
Begin by documenting any signs of abuse or neglect, including taking photographs, noting dates and times of incidents, and recording any communication with facility staff. This documentation will be invaluable in building your case.
Contact Our Team
If you recognize any of the injuries mentioned as signs of potential abuse or neglect, do not hesitate to reach out. Our legal team is ready to listen, advise, and take decisive action on behalf of your loved one. Contact us today at (844) 407-6737 or request a consultation here.