In recent years, there have been horrifying accounts of complications arising from impacted bowels in several nursing homes. Fecal impaction is a severe type of constipation that can be quite painful and is not uncommon in nursing homes.
In 2006, a New Hampshire nursing home resident was hospitalized after the staff neglected to prevent and recognize that she had a serious bowl condition. The facility was found to have failed to provide "bowel management care services" to 47 of the 87 residents screened.
In a Florida nursing home, a nurse's aide told a resident's family member and the nursing home staff that he suspected the resident had an impacted bowel. Not only did the staff misrepresent the patient's bowel movements and diet, they failed to make entries on his chart and falsified records. When he died, an autopsy report revealed a severely impacted bowl and colon.
In yet another case, a Kentucky nursing home resident died from a heart attack after his repeated calls for help with abdominal pain went unanswered. The autopsy revealed a severely impacted bowl.
Most certainly, any complaints of pain that a nursing home resident may have should be immediately addressed by the staff and continual pain should be investigated to determine the cause of the pain. Appropriate treatment of the cause should be given, including pain medications. Failure to do so is may be grounds for medical malpractice.
In the same respect, any health provider knows that an open wound is susceptible to infection. When nursing home staff fails to treat and monitor open wounds, infection can quickly develop and lead to sepsis. Sepsis is a life-threatening disease frequently seen in elderly persons because of their vulnerable immune systems.
If you or someone you love has suffered from unattended medical conditions in an Arizona nursing home or long term care facility there may be grounds for a personal injury or medical malpractice case
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