When dealing with the possibility of abuse in a nursing home, it is important to look for signs that might not stand out as immediately obvious.
This can include the appearance of bedsores, also called pressure ulcers. While these injuries may appear for innocuous reasons, that is not always the case, unfortunately.
What are pressure ulcers?
Johns Hopkins Medicine looks into the causes behind pressure ulcers. A pressure ulcer is, as the name implies, an ulcer that appears due to the application of pressure to an area of the body over an extended period of time. This pressure will cause laceration and swelling of the skin.
Pressure ulcers can vary in severity, with some barely seeming noticeable and others reaching all the way down to the bone. They can also have different onset times, with some occurring within hours and others taking a day or more to appear.
What pressure ulcers mean
Sometimes, these sores simply point to a sedentary lifestyle, as they are most common in the elderly who struggle to move or in bedridden patients.
Sometimes, they can indicate the presence of neglect, though. Staff should constantly check on individuals who cannot support themselves or move around easily. They should also move bedridden patients around frequently specifically so they do not get these ulcers.
If your loved one ends up in the same position for hours at a time, they might develop pressure ulcers. They could have ended up left in such a position because negligent staff forgot about them, or because they simply do not have the numbers needed to care for everyone appropriately. In either case, it is still an issue of neglect that you can legally address.