Chicago Infection & Sepsis Attorneys
Fighting Back Against Negligent Elder & Nursing Home Care
Infection is one of the most common risks facing nursing home residents today. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated one to three million serious infections occur in U.S. nursing homes, skilled nursing facilities, and assisted living facilities each year. Every year, as many as 380,000 patients and residents lose their lives as a result of these infections.
If you or a loved one developed a serious infection at a nursing home, it is important to consider whether negligence played a role. If the facility failed to provide a reasonable level of care, and this resulted in an infection that caused serious injury or death, this may provide grounds for a viable nursing home abuse lawsuit. Our Chicago infection and sepsis lawyers at Ferrell Young, LLC can investigate the matter to determine what caused the infection, whether it was properly treated, and whether the facility should be held accountable.
Our Chicago nursing home infection and sepsis attorneys can talk to you about your legal options and how to move forward. Call (312) 698-9089 now for a free, confidential consultation. Se habla Español.
What Factors Lead to Nursing Home Infections?
Elderly patients of nursing homes and assisted living facilities are at an increased risk of infection due to weakened immune systems, preexisting conditions, and the fact that they may be bedridden, may be unable to use the restroom on their own, and may have difficulty eating or drinking.
Proper nutrition, hygiene, and other simple steps can reduce risk and spread of infection, but at some nursing homes, caregivers are negligent and fail to meet patients’ basic needs. Some facilities may have improper procedures in place to prevent, identify, and treat infection.
Common Infections in Nursing Homes
Nursing home residents may be at risk of developing specific types of infections. These include:
- Influenza: Weakened immune systems and preexisting health conditions place seniors at risk of influenza. With elderly patients, it is not just “the flu.” Influenza can sweep through a nursing home if proper containment measures are not in place, with devastating consequences. It can develop into pneumonia and may even threaten the lives of already fragile patients.
- Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA): This type of infection occurs when bacteria enter the body through an open wound. It may also be introduced through catheters or breathing tubes. MRSA is resistant to antibiotics and is spread by physical contact, making it a serious problem in nursing homes.
- Pneumonia: Immobility, diabetes, cardiopulmonary disease, and smaller lung capacity may place seniors at an increased risk of pneumonia, but its symptoms can be difficult to recognize in elderly patients. Nursing home caregivers must be vigilant about watching for signs and treating pneumonia as quickly as possible.
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs): Catheter use and dehydration can increase the risk of UTIs in elderly residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities. This bacterial infection can cause symptoms such as incontinence, confusion, worsening of dementia, and behavioral changes.
Infections can lead to serious problems on their own. If left untreated, complications can occur—such as sepsis.
What Is Sepsis?
Sepsis occurs when the body has an extreme response to an infection and turns on itself. The body begins to damage its own tissues, causing their organs to function poorly and, potentially, fail. Additionally, sepsis may progress to what is known as “septic shock,” a dramatic drop in blood pressure that can lead to severe organ problems and even death.
Because anyone can develop sepsis, the statistics may be shocking. According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):
- An estimated 1.7 million American adults experience sepsis annually
- Approximately 270,000 Americans die of sepsis every year
- 1 out of every 3 patients who die while hospitalized have sepsis
Sepsis commonly occurs in medical settings. Patients who are 65 or older and have chronic medical conditions, weakened immune systems, and/or have recently been very ill or hospitalized are especially at risk of developing sepsis. Invasive medical devices, such as breathing tubes and catheters, also increase the possibility of sepsis. It is no wonder, then, that nursing home patients find themselves especially vulnerable.
Call Our Chicago Infection & Sepsis Lawyers
When neglect leads to infection at a nursing home, Ferrell Young, LLC is there to seek justice on behalf of victims. If you or your elderly loved one suffered serious harm or lost their life as a result of an infection or sepsis, we can investigate the matter to see whether you have a claim. We have fought for victims of elder abuse and neglect for years and are prepared to see how we can help you win your case and achieve justice.
Contact our team at (312) 698-9089 to discuss your infection or sepsis claim. We serve residents of nursing homes across Illinois. Se habla Español.