Near Death Experience Because of an Untreated Pressure Sore
- Posted by: curtislegalwp
- Category: News
There are many heart rending stories about ordinary people whose lives are turned upside down by contracting pressure sores. These sores should never develop if proper care and attention is paid by those who were entrusted to care for them. In most cases, the victims of pressure sores are those who are least able to stand up for themselves or complain – the elderly, the disabled and the sick. The story recounted below is just one of many stories compiled by the Your Turn Campaign, which is a voluntary organisation, run as a side line by people who work in the pressure sore mitigation industry.
A 77 year old grandmother was taken to a Hertfordshire hospital after having a stroke. At that point, recovery seemed probable, but the woman was kept in hospital while recovering from the stroke. After a couple of weeks, her granddaughter noticed that she was not her normal self and appeared to be suffering from something other than the effects of the stroke. On questioning staff at the hospital she was told that her grandmother had developed a pressure sore on her buttocks and lower back. One of the reasons why pressure sores are often called bed sores is that they develop commonly when someone is lying for long periods on a bed, as in this case. The granddaughter didn’t think about her grandmother’s condition that much as she didn’t realise the significance of pressure sores and assumed that it would be treated while her grandmother was in hospital.
The grandmother stayed another few weeks in the hospital before being discharged. By that time her pressure sore had got worse and was now a Grade 3 sore on the scale of seriousness (Grade 4 being the worst). The granddaughter arranged for her to be looked after in a private nursing home that claimed to have a well developed policy of monitoring and dealing with pressure sores. All seemed to be under control.
The next development came a few weeks later when the granddaughter was contacted by police, who informed her that the nursing home was being investigated for substandard care and that several residents including her grandmother had either developed pressure sores or whose sores had taken a turn for the worse. One resident had even already died due to pressure sore infection. Her grandmother had been rushed to Luton and Dunstable hospital where her sore was diagnosed as at a Grade 4 stage, potentially lethal.
The granddaughter was not surprisingly horrified to discover that the nursing home that had advertised itself as a specialist in pressure sore management had allowed not only her grandmother’s condition to worsen, but that the problem was part of a systematic failure in the home.
The only good news from this one of many stories is that the grandmother did recover after treatment in hospital and is now apparently living in a much better nursing home than the previous one. The granddaughter is confident that the same thing will not happen again.
If a loved one in your family develops pressure spores or you are unsatisfied with the way that your relative is being cared for at a nursing home or hospital, you should express your concerns as soon as possible with those in charge of your relative’s care. If you believe that your concerns are not being addressed or not taken seriously enough then you should contact a solicitor who is experienced with pressure sore cases to discuss any possible legal action you can take.