Malnutrition and Dehydration
When you entrust the care of a family member to a nursing home, you expect the nursing home staff to be attentive and ensure that your loved one is properly monitored and that his or her nutritional needs are met. Unfortunately, nursing homes do not always provide adequate care, and the neglect of nursing home staff can result in injuries to the very individuals whom they are hired to help. Like bedsores, malnutrition and dehydration are common conditions that may arise due to a nursing home’s negligent failure to provide adequate care. If your family member suffered from malnutrition or dehydration during their residency at a nursing home, they are entitled to compensation for their harm. The Cape Cod nursing home negligence lawyers at the Law Offices of John C. Manoog, III, have over 150 years of combined experience advocating for elderly victims who have been injured due to the negligence of nursing home staff. We will aggressively pursue the damages that your loved one and you are rightfully owed. Our attorneys have obtained many multimillion-dollar verdicts and settlements for our clients.Signs of Malnutrition and Dehydration
Adequate nutrition is one of the facets of care that we expect nursing homes to provide. Unfortunately, however, malnutrition and dehydration are prevalent in nursing homes. Malnutrition occurs when a person is either not fed enough or not fed food that meets his or her nutritional requirements. Signs of malnutrition include weak or atrophied muscles, changes in the mouth such as canker sores or infections, red or glassy eyes, and changes in skin color or tone. If an elderly person is malnourished, he or she may also experience cognitive changes, such as confusion, irritability, and dementia.
Dehydration occurs when a person is not given enough fluids to replace the amount of fluid lost due to normal daily functions or an illness. Symptoms of dehydration include a dry mouth and dry skin, as well as a decrease in urination. If dehydration is severe, the person may be confused and irritable, have sunken eyes, suffer from low blood pressure, and have rapid breathing.
Malnutrition and dehydration are both serious ailments that can lead to other illnesses and complications. If dehydration is not remedied in a timely manner, it can lead to seizures, kidney failure, and death. Malnutrition and dehydration are more common in nursing homes that lack adequate staff to care for their residents. Even if a nursing home is fully staffed, if the workers are inattentive or inexperienced and fail to monitor the nutritional and liquid intake of a resident, it does not take long for these conditions to arise.Establishing the Liability of a Nursing Home
Under both federal law and Massachusetts law, nursing home facilities must adhere to a certain standard of care in attending to their residents. This includes meeting the daily care needs of residents, such as nutritional needs. In pursuing a negligence case against a nursing home, your attorney will need to prove that the nursing home breached its duty of care and that the breach caused the injuries and damages suffered by your loved one or you. This means that you must show that if not for the nursing home’s neglect, your loved one would not have suffered from malnutrition or dehydration or any subsequent illnesses or injuries caused by these conditions.
The nursing home may argue that pre-existing or unrelated conditions caused certain illnesses, rather than malnutrition or dehydration. Your attorney will conduct discovery to obtain the documentation of your family member’s medical history and staffing and care records from the nursing home. Additionally, it may be important to engage a medical expert to examine your loved one or his or her medical records to prove that the nursing home caused the illness through the malnutrition or dehydration.
Regarding damages, you should be able to recover any past and future medical costs, and your loved one should be compensated for the pain and suffering caused by the nursing home’s neglect. A nursing home negligence lawsuit must be filed within three years of the injury. Therefore, if you suspect that a family member is being neglected in a nursing home, you should confer with an attorney who is experienced in litigating nursing home negligence cases as soon as possible to ensure that your case is filed in a timely manner.Retain a Cape Cod Attorney to sue a Nursing Home for Inadequate Care
The nursing home negligence lawyers at the Law Offices of John C. Manoog, III have a record of favorable settlements and verdicts in Massachusetts nursing home cases involving malnutrition and dehydration as well as overmedication, bedsores, and other conditions caused by inadequate care. We can anticipate any obstacles to your claim and tirelessly pursue the maximum amount of damages that you are owed. We represent clients throughout Cape Cod from offices in Hyannis and Plymouth. Contact us at 888-262-6664 or via our online form to set up a free consultation.