Hospital Bedsore Lawsuits

Carl Saiontz

By Carl Saiontz
Posted December 9, 2008


According to a new government report, the occurrence of bedsores in hospitals has increased nearly 80% since 1993. These serious open wounds were mainly found among elderly patients, and can have a devastating impact on their overall health and quality of life. The medical malpractice lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. investigate potential hospital bedsore lawsuits nationwide.

Bedsores, which are also known as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers, are caused by a lack of blood flow to an area of the skin when prolonged pressure is applied to one area of the body. They are typically seen among people who are unable to turn or reposition themselves, and often develop on the tailbone, heels, elbows and shoulder blades, where skin is thinner.

According to the New York Times, a new report from the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality found that the number of hospital bedsores in the United States increased from 281,300 in 1993 to 503,300 in 2006. This 78.9% increase eclipses the 15% increase in overall hospital admissions found between 1993 and 2006.

Most of the hospital pressure ulcers were found among inpatients who were 65 years old or older. Elderly patients are most vulnerable to bedsores, especially if they are not well-nourished or their immune systems are compromised.

The report does not draw any conclusions about what is causing the increase in hospital pressure sores, but indicates that through cooperation between nurses, dietary aids, physical therapists and physicians, these bed sores are preventable.

Bedsores often start as an area of red or irritated skin, and if they go undetected and untreated, they can progress to a painful, open wound that may become infected.

Earlier this year we wrote about research which suggested that multidisciplinary team efforts can be successful in reducing severe bedsores by 69%. The study, which focused on nursing home bedsores, found that the key to success was identifying patients at a higher risk for bedsores, such as those suffering from mobility problems, poor nutrition or incontinence. Consistent measures were then taken to prevent sores, such as moving and repositioning the patients more frequently, using padding or cushions to reduce pressure on any one part of the body and using moisture barrier creams.


If the proper standards of medical care in the industry are followed, nursing home and hospital bedsores can and should be prevented. When patients are not properly monitored and turned, what can start as an area of red or irritated skin can develop into large and potentially life-threatening open wounds.

The bedsore lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. investigate potential lawsuits throughout the United States in cases where the open wounds have led to an infection, severe change in the patients quality of life or death. To review a potential case for a family member or loved one, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.

9 Comments • Add Your Comments

  • Vincent says:

    my mother was taken to the hospital from the nursing home where it was discovered that she had multiple bedsores. Some of the bedsores went all the way to the bone, and another one on her foot that had she lived, her leg would have to be amputated because the bedsore was so bad. Everytime I visited her at the nursing home, they would have her foot wrapped and told me that it was only a minor bedsore.

    Posted on December 29, 2008 at 11:26 am

  • Donna says:

    Some nurses and hospital personnel fail to check the patients records and are notified by family of bed sores after they have gotten worse. Although unfortunate, what do you say when you lose someone because the people you entrust your loved ones to do not do their job or have so little compassion for your loved one that they just don’t care. I have been through so much with hospitals and doctors and no one wants to help you understand WHY does this happen and why and how do they get away with it. The medical system continues to fail us.

    Posted on March 10, 2009 at 11:40 am

  • Donna says:

    Ft.Hamilton hospital in Hamilton Ohio released my mother with a stage two bed wound ,after a month in their care.The surgeon that did her hip replacement surgery put to small of a ball in and admitted this after the forth time it popped out of socket.she only lasted 3.5 months.She died on Mothers Day 07. Just because she was 81 years old, she was my world. My life will never be the same.

    Posted on March 23, 2009 at 3:40 pm

  • Wound care nurse says:

    I am a certified (will keep certification unnamed) wound care nurse with over ten years experience in treating wounds. i work in both acute and sub-acute settings and am quite outraged at the unsubstantiated focus on SNF’s as it relates to pressure ulcers. What I don’t understand is the fact that hospitals are almost exempt from responsibility as it pertains to aquired pressure ulcers. I work mainly on a cardiac rehab unit for patients status/post open heart surgery. Even though my patients are are quite mobile, i would have to say that about 75% of them arrive in my care with HOSPITAL AQUIRED pressure ulcers. Yes, nearly 75%. I would be more than willing to provide raw data when/if appropriate. The other thing that outrages me is that there is mainly one hosp whom sends us these patients. What is sad is that I see the same reaction from nearly every family member… It is as if they know that there is nothing they can do as it pertains to hosp responsibility, but they seem to know that the nursing home is held to a higher standard. As if to say,” I know it didn’t happen here but you better pray that it doesn’t get worse while he/she is here”. The facility that employs me is very proactive in prevention. I am part of a 4 member team who does weekly wound rounds and PRN evaluations. One would think that we have our stuff together. Well, we are the focus of a very serious lawsuit pertaining to presure ulcers. It just goes to show that no good deed shall go unpunished.

    Posted on May 27, 2009 at 8:45 pm

  • terra says:

    IM am so confused on what to do my grandfather was just transfered from a hospital and while im in the romm while the nurse at nursing home doing essesment we find these sores on tail bone open sores on his private part what am i to do are the hospitals so hard why do they do older people like this

    Posted on November 15, 2010 at 8:25 pm

  • Chris says:

    Just over a year ago I spent 3 weeks in the Critical Care Unit in a major level 1trama center I was in a medical indused coma for that time after they woke me I learned I had grade 4 bedsores I was told by nurces I was not turned and I wasn’t on the proper bed I then spent an additional 5 months in the hospital and 5 surgrys as a result of the bedsores.I understand these things can happen but the extent of these injuries are pure the results and limitations are something I have live with the rest of my life.

    Posted on December 14, 2010 at 7:07 pm

  • Jessie says:

    MY mother has bed sores after a stay at St Bernard Hospital now they moved her to any place.

    Posted on February 5, 2013 at 7:16 pm

  • Debra says:

    My mom was sent to nursing home. .checked in from hospital with stage 3:pressure ulcer . they just put a diaper on her no treatment . The sore went through tail bone. 2 surgeries.. Septic twice She suffered 6 months without pain meds and died 01/11/2013 from bedsore. Makes me sick….they took my mom from me and this has messed up my life. She was healthy 83 worked 5 days week. They don’t care when you reach that age…they just don’t CARE!!!! Makes me sick!

    Posted on January 28, 2016 at 7:17 am

  • James says:

    Which model of the Stryker operating table has the hinged higher than the table about 1 inch or higher
    level? Requires cushion on the table before a patient lays on the table. Is it the 1069, 1067, 5051, 1079
    or the 1089CE model. Could you provide a picture of which model along with high’th of the hinge?
    Which model can be hinged upward to a 90 degree angle? thank you

    Posted on July 16, 2017 at 10:10 am

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