Wrongful Death Lawsuit Accuses Nursing Home of Bedsore Negligence

As Maryland Nursing Home Negligence and Abuse Attorneys, we have been following the recent lawsuit filed against Caseyville Nursing and Rehabilitation Center—where a nursing home resident died after the staff at the center allegedly neglected to treat her multiple bedsores while she was a resident at the facility.

According to the lawsuit, Theresa Steiner was admitted to the nursing and rehabilitation center as a patient on December 12, 2008. She entered the home with pre-existing decubitus ulcers, or pressure sores— three on her buttocks that were stage II, and pressure sores that had developed on both heels after staying for a week at Anderson Hospital for abdominal bleeding.

One week later, Steiner’s buttock ulcers had developed into stage IV bedsores, there were multiple sores on her heels, and she had developed sepsis, one of the greatest dangers of an advanced pressure sore—when bacteria enters the bloodstream and spreads throughout your body. Sepsis is a potentially lethal condition that progresses quickly and can cause organ failure.

Steiner was taken to the hospital on December 19, 2008, and died on January 7, 2009 from sepsis and acute respiratory failure. Steiner’s son accuses the center of nursing home negligence—for failing to screen his mother bedsores properly before entry, for properly treating the bedsores, and for failing to alert Steiner’s doctor on the seriousness of her the bedsores to prevent further deterioration. According to the suit, the facility did not have a nurse on staff that specialized in wound care, and who was properly trained in treating pressure sores.

In a related blog, our nursing home negligence lawyers discussed the risk of decubitus ulcers as they are a leading cause of nursing home injury, affecting nearly one million Americans every year. When a resident stays too long in one position without movement or shifting weight, the blood supply to a resident’s skin is cut off, due to unrelieved pressure on the skin, and decubitus ulcers form.

All stages of pressure sores are preventable, as long as nursing home residents are provided with appropriate care. The primary goal of pressure sore treatment is preventing it before the ulcers develop. Nursing home residents who are bedridden and immobile should be checked daily for bedsores, and moved every two hours to relieve pressure.

Illinois Nursing Home Wrongful Death Lawsuit Alleges Sepsis from Bedsores, Aboutlawsuits.com, December 10, 2009
Nursing Home Blamed For Resident’s Sepsis, Madison Record, December 7, 2009
National Institutes of Health, (NIH): Medline Plus: Pressure Ulcer Research

The AGS Foundation for Health and Aging: Pressure Sores

National Institutes of Health, (NIH): Medline Plus: Sepsis

Bedsores: Complications, Mayo Clinic

Related Web Resources:

NCHS Data Brief: Pressure Ulcers Among Nursing Home Residents: United States 2004

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