Dehydration and Malnutrition in Kentucky Nursing Homes
At the core of many nursing home neglect and abuses cases is the fact that many homes do not have enough staff or because the staff do not receive proper training. One major type of nursing home neglect that is often not considered is injuries caused by dehydration and malnutrition of the residents. During the past several years it is estimated that 14,000 nursing home patients died due to dehydration and malnutrition. If you feel that someone you love has suffered an injury or died because of malnutrition or dehydration, then it is important that you speak with a Kentucky nursing home injury lawyer right away. They will hear your case and work with you to see to it that you receive the compensation you are entitled to for what you have suffered.What does Dehydration mean when discussing Kentucky Nursing Home Injuries?
Dehydration can be described as an extreme amount of fluid loss. The American Medical Association defines dehydration as rapid weight loss, of more than thirty-five percent of a person’s body. The causes of dehydration may include sicknesses, adverse side effects of medicines, or a decline in the amount of fluids a person is drinking. Dehydration often occurs in nursing homes because the staff may be too busy and forget to get someone proper fluids or they may just refuse to do so. Elderly patients most often cannot move around well enough to get their own drinks and may not be able to properly alert someone if they think they are becoming dehydrated.What are some Dehydration symptoms to be aware of?
If dehydration is left untreated it can lead to serious problems such as a compromised immune system, dementia, pressure sores, and several other infections and serious medical conditions. It is important to be aware of some major symptoms of dehydration; these may include but are not limited to:
- Being excessively thirsty
- Not feeling like eating or not feeling hungry
- Dryness of a patient’s skin
- Dark urine
- Dryness of the mouth
- Chills and dizziness
- Trouble breathing
Malnutrition is another main cause of nursing home injuries and neglect. It can be described as a condition that occurs from eating an improper diet that does not have the proper amount of nutrition or has an excessive amount of certain kinds of nutrients. When a patient is not provided with enough food malnutrition can often occur. Often times, the improper serving size of foods are given to residents in the home which will lead to malnutrition. If a patient has problems with their teeth or gums they may have a hard time eating the proper amount of food that their body needs. Other reasons that may lead to malnutrition in nursing homes include patients not being able to feed themselves, not having enough staff members to help each patient get proper meals, or a loss of appetite of the patient due to depression, medication side effects or other medical problems. It is crucial that staff watch the residents during meal times to make sure that they are getting enough to eat.What are some symptoms of Malnutrition?
It is important that staff members in nursing homes watch their residents for signs of malnutrition. Some symptoms of malnutrition to be aware of may include but are not limited to:
- Excessive or abnormal weight loss
- Dental problems such as bleeding gums
- Weak bones or muscles
- Loss of memory
- Decline in organ function
- Dryness of skin
- Becoming bloated
- Feeling confused
Malnutrition and dehydration can lead to severe injuries that can be life-threatening and may lead to death. If you feel that someone you care about has been injured or died because of dehydration and malnutrition in a nursing home, then you should contact a caring and experienced Kentucky nursing home attorney with the Higgins Firm. We will review your case and work with you to make sure you get the compensation you need for what you have been through.
Contact us online or call us at 800.705.2121 to set up a FREE consultation to discuss your legal options