Casselberry Pressure Ulcers Attorneys
Patients in a nursing home, hospital, or long-term care facility are at increased risk of developing pressure ulcers, commonly known as “bed sores.” While these bed sores can be nothing more than a minor irritant, pressure ulcers can also result in serious, permanent injuries. In fact, a report published by American Nurse Today indicates that up to 60,000 Americans die each year due to these sores and injuries.
If you or a member of your family suffered injuries caused by a pressure ulcer that developed while at a nursing home, hospital, or long-term care facility, you may be entitled to recover monetary damages for your physical injuries and your pain, suffering, and other related losses. Experienced Casselberry medical malpractice attorneys can help you hold caretakers and health care providers accountable for their negligent care and obtain the compensation you deserve.
At Warner & Warner, we have seen the physical, emotional, and financial impact pressure ulcers can have on patients and their families and are committed to helping victims of negligent care. Let us put our legal skill, experience and resources to work fighting for your right to be fairly compensated and ensuring that those responsible for your losses are held accountable.
What Is a Pressure Ulcer?
You may not think of your skin as a living organ; however, not only is it an organ, but it is the largest organ in your body. Like all organs, your skin needs a constant flow of blood to survive. If that blood flow is impaired or stopped, the living tissue that is part of your skin will die. The resulting wound may become a pressure ulcer if it occurs over a bony prominence, which is an area where not much tissue separates bone from muscle, such as your elbows, tailbone, hip bone, or shoulder blades.
Being confined to a bed increases your likelihood of developing a pressure ulcer because you are unable to change positions without help. If caregivers fail to provide that help and you remain in a prone position for an extended period, pressure ulcers can occur.
What Type of Injuries Can Be Caused by a Pressure Ulcer?
The extent of injury caused by a pressure ulcer can vary from a minor wound to a severe wound that goes through the muscle all the way to the spine. A serious pressure ulcer wound may become infected, which can lead to death if not caught early enough and treated properly.
According to the National Pressure Ulcer Advisory Panel (NPUAP) there are four pressure injury stages:
- Stage 1 – Non-Blanchable Erythema of Intact Skin. Intact skin with a localized area of non-blanchable erythema, which may appear differently in darkly pigmented skin. Presence of blanchable erythema or changes in sensation, temperature, or firmness may precede visual changes. Color changes do not include purple or maroon discoloration; these may indicate deep tissue pressure injury.
- Stage 2 – Partial-Thickness Skin Loss with Exposed Dermis. Partial-thickness loss of skin with exposed dermis. The wound bed is viable, pink or red, moist, and may also present as an intact or ruptured serum-filled blister. Adipose (fat) is not visible and deeper tissues are not visible. Granulation tissue, slough and eschar are not present. These injuries commonly result from adverse microclimate and shear in the skin over the pelvis and shear in the heel.
- Stage 3 – Full-Thickness Skin Loss. Full-thickness loss of skin, in which adipose (fat) is visible in the ulcer and granulation tissue and epibole (rolled wound edges) are often present. Slough and/or eschar may be visible. The depth of tissue damage varies by anatomical location; areas of significant adiposity can develop deep wounds. Undermining and tunneling may occur. Fascia, muscle, tendon, ligament, cartilage and/or bone are not exposed.
- Stage 4 – Full-Thickness Skin and Tissue Loss. Full-thickness skin and tissue loss with exposed or directly palpable fascia, muscle, tendon, ligament, cartilage or bone in the ulcer. Slough and/or eschar may be visible. Epibole (rolled edges), undermining and/or tunneling often occur. Depth varies by anatomical location.
Who Is at Fault When a Pressure Ulcer Occurs?
Bed sores are preventable when patients receive competent and consistent care. However, when caregivers fail to monitor bedridden patients and move them as needed, pressure ulcers may occur. If that happens, the health care professionals and facilities responsible for the patients’ care may be legally liable for the resulting injuries. Common examples of potential at-fault parties include:
- Long-term care facilities
- Nursing staff
- Home health care agencies
What Compensation Can Pressure Ulcer Victims Obtain?
If you or a family member has been injured due to bed sores, you may be able to hold negligent health care professionals and facilities liable and secure the financial compensation you deserve for economic and non-economic damages.
These compensatory damages may include payment for:
- Medical bills related to the bed sore(s)
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
- Diminished capacity to enjoy life
- Other relevant damages recoverable under Florida law
When to Contact a Casselberry Pressure Ulcer Attorney
The physical injuries caused by a pressure ulcer can be severe, up to and including death. If you are the victim of injuries caused by a pressure ulcer, or you lost a family member because of complications resulting from a pressure ulcer, you could be entitled to compensation for your injuries or loss.
The Casselberry pressure ulcer attorneys at Warner & Warner are dedicated to zealously advocating for the rights of those who have been injured by a healthcare professional’s negligence. We will fight to ensure that the responsible party (or parties) is held accountable and that you are fully and fairly compensated for all the injuries you suffered.
The Warner & Warner attorneys have the skill, resources, and specialized experience needed to successfully litigate medical malpractice and negligence lawsuits that stem from injuries caused by pressure ulcers. Let us put our legal expertise to work fighting for you. Call us at 321-972-1889 or contact us online to schedule a free case review.