Do bedsores lead to infection?



Bedsores can and do lead to life threatening infections in nursing home residents.

Bedsores, also called pressure ulcers or decubitus ulcers, are an injury caused by prolonged pressure to the skin. Pressure inhibits blood circulation to the underlying area and as a result, tissue and muscle decay and die.

According to current studies, almost all bedsores of Stage III and Stage IV contain bacteria although they may not be infected. Infection occurs when the bacteria travels from the skin, into the wound bed, and then into the surrounding tissue. Common infections arising from bedsores include sepsis, osteomyelitis, and cellulitis. 

Sepsis is an infection of the blood that can lead to organ failure and death. According to some studies, victims of sepsis have only a 50% chance of survival once septic shock sets in.

Osteomyelitis is an infection of the bone and joints which can lead to amputation of the infected areas.

Cellulitis is an infection that occurs in the skin and can be very painful, and even life-threatening when it spreads to the bone via the bloodstream.

Signs of infection include swelling, warmth, reddening, and increased pain or tenderness. More serious symptoms include purulent exudate, like puss or discharge. A wound culture may be used to assess the level of infection as well, usually thought a surface swab of the wound area. A wound is technically infected if it contains 100,000 or more micro-organisms per gram of tissue.

Nursing homes are responsible for taking adequate steps to prevent bedsores. When they fail to prevent a bedsore, they may be liable for the harms and losses, including any consequence of the infections that may arise.

If your loved developed an infection from bed sores at a nursing home or assisted living facility, and you are wondering if you have a claim, then please, feel free to call and speak to one of our experienced Georgia nursing home neglect lawyers today. Our consultations are always free. If you would like to learn more about this topic or watch additional videos please subscribe to our YouTube channel.