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How dangerous are bed sores?

On Behalf of | Sep 22, 2021 | Elder Law |

If you have a loved one in a nursing home, you may pay special attention to his or her care. If you worry about the treatment he or she receives, understanding the signs of neglect may help. One of the most common injuries neglected patients suffer from are bedsores.

According to Mayo Clinic, bedsores are pressure ulcers and occur due to prolonged pressure on the skin. For example, if bedridden patients may experience pressure ulcers if the caregivers do not move them.

What are the symptoms of bedsores?

Bedsores may appear on the tailbone, backs of arms, legs, spine, and shoulder blades. For those who stay in bed, you may find them on the back or sides of the patient’s head, the hip or the heels and ankles. Bedsores look like an unusual change in skin color and texture. They also present with swelling, draining and may feel warm or cool to the touch. Bedsores have levels of severity. Some bedsores may be unbroken skin, but other bedsores involve muscle and bone.

What are the complications of bedsores?

Bedsores can become extremely painful and life-threatening. One of the most dangerous complications is cellulitis. Cellulitis is a skin infection that can worsen quickly. It may cause redness, warmth and swelling in the affected area. If your loved one has nerve damage, he or she may not feel the infection. Other forms of infection can affect the joints and bones and damage the tissue and cartilage. An infection can severely limit your loved one’s ability to move joints and limbs. Non-healing wounds can also lead to a type of squamous cell carcinoma or cancer.

Nursing homes should have staff capable of preventing bedsores.


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