According to recent statistics from the National Institutes of Health, sepsis and septic shock claimed more lives than lung cancer, breast cancer, and heart attacks. Sepsis tends to affect older adults, especially those who are experiencing ulcers and active infections. While some cases of sepsis are unavoidable, many results from Maryland nursing home abuse or negligence.
What Are the Risks of Sepsis?
Sepsis poses a significant threat to nursing home residents, as many residents suffer from the comorbidities associated with this medical condition. This life-threatening condition occurs when the body is fighting off a fungal, bacterial, or viral infection. The body responds by releasing chemicals into the bloodstream. While this natural mechanism can successfully fight off infections, it can also cause vulnerable individuals to experience a sudden chemical imbalance. This imbalance can result in sepsis or septic shock. If medical providers fail to treat sepsis immediately, the condition can cause permanent organ damage and death.
While anyone can experience sepsis, nursing home residents often carry risk factors associated with fatal sepsis. The highest risk individuals include older adults, pregnant women, and infants. Further, those with weakened immune systems, chronic health conditions, and open wounds and sores are at an increased risk of developing sepsis. Older adults, especially those receiving care at a nursing home, often have more than one of these risk factors. In addition, situational factors such as pneumonia, bladder infections, blood infections, intensive care patients, and nursing home residents on antibiotics are often at risk for sepsis.
Nursing homes should take steps to prevent and quickly treat sepsis. Some steps include frequently changing and washing linens, sanitizing bathrooms, providing hot water, and providing residents with thoughtful and appropriate care. In many cases, sepsis can be a critical warning sign that the patient or resident is experiencing nursing home abuse or neglect. For instance, according to a news report, a woman recently sued a nursing home and rehabilitation center based on negligence, carelessness, and a departure from the appropriate standard of care of her family member. The resident was admitted to a hospital for a septic urinary tract infection caused by E. Coli and an infected ulcer. Medical professionals discovered evidence that the woman’s wound was not properly cleaned. The woman contends that if the facility followed health and safety protocols by providing appropriate care and preventing bedsores, they could have prevented her family member from developing sepsis.
Has Your Loved One Suffered Nursing Home Abuse or Neglect in Maryland?
If you or someone you know suspects nursing home abuse and neglect in Maryland, contact the injury attorneys at Lebowitz & Mzhen. Our attorneys can help you determine fault and liability if you suspect that your loved one is experiencing nursing home abuse. In addition, our firm handles Maryland cases involving motor vehicle accidents, premises liability, products liability, and medical malpractice. We provide clients with confidential and free initial consultations to determine the available compensation after an injury or accident. Contact our office at 800-654-1949 to schedule a free initial consultation with an experienced attorney on our legal team.