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Chicago Nursing Home Dehydration Attorney

Nursing home abuse can be identified in numerous ways, including broken bones, abrasions, verbal mistreatment, and emotional assault on patients.
News headlines rarely discuss the dehydration and malnutrition that nursing home residents suffer from the negligent care within a skilled nursing facility.

Unfortunately, dehydration of nursing home patients is a common abusive behavior by the nursing team that occurs in long-term care facilities.

Nursing home staff must ensure the well-being of patients, including ensuring that residents receive sufficient fluid intake so they can achieve their optimum level of functioning.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is committed to protecting the legal rights of Illinois nursing home patients who have injuries related to malnutrition or lack of water.

Our nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys have a strong track record of holding facilities fully accountable when a resident suffers injuries or complications associated with malnutrition and dehydration.

Chicago nursing home dehydration attorney

Contact our personal injury law firm (888) 424-5757 for a confidential free consultation of an elder home dehydration case on behalf of your loved one.

The Importance of Proper Nutrition and Hydration for Nursing Home Patients

Every human being must maintain proper nutrition and hydration for the functioning of body organs. Food and water are essential for the systems of the body to operate effectively.

Without water and foot, the human body would be unable to maintain body temperature properly or remove waste products and the body begins to break down.

Nursing home patients must maintain proper nutrition and hydration. They may have severe medical conditions that cause the body to use up energy faster.

Elderly people also need proper hydration to maintain a robust immune system. The body is unable to fight off infections from the body without proper hydration.

A lack of proper hydration can cause the development of life-threatening pressure ulcers or muscle weakness.

Nursing Home Dehydration

Statistics revealed that over 10,000 nursing home residents died between 1999 and 2002 as a result of dehydration and malnutrition.

Out of any given forty residents surveyed at a particular time, statistics further reveal that only one resident likely has proper hydration within a nursing home.

Caregiving facilities must take a more active approach to ensure that elder home residents are always hydrated. The facility might need to hire additional staff workers to supervise and monitor nursing home residents throughout the day.

Many long-term care facilities have inadequate staffing levels, contributing to high rates of abuse and neglect in nursing homes.

Chicago nursing home malnutrition attorney

Under-Staffing and Nursing Home Malnutrition in Chicago, IL Facilities

Nursing home staff may feel overwhelmed or too busy to monitor patients throughout the day.

Staff is often overworked with too many patients under their care. Staff members might be in charge of duties outside of their job description, including social activities.

Being overworked during their scheduled time could impede the actual care that is provided to nursing home residents. Additionally, nursing home administrators might fail to create specialized care plans for residents.

Those in charge might fail to ensure that the special diet needs of a patient are being met. Some patients often require more liquids than others, but a nursing home may not discover this need without an assessment or if no particular care plan is created.

Nursing Home Malnutrition Dehydration Injury FAQs

Medically, dehydration is defined as too little water to ensure the body can function. Malnutrition can be defined by the body not getting sufficient calories and nutrition to function optimally.

Below are some frequently asked questions raised by clients who suspect malnutrition or dehydration of a loved one.

What are the Signs of Malnutrition?

Aside from the obvious signs of malnutrition when a loved one is not eating their meals, physical signs of malnutrition include:

  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Pale or yellowing skin coloring
  • Dental deterioration or bleeding gums
  • Brittle hair and nails
  • Bed Sores

What are the Nursing Interventions for Dehydration?

Caregivers, family, a loved one, and friends should ensure that the patient has extra fluids at mealtime, including ice, juice, sherbet, ice cream, gelatin, and water on their meal tray.

Additionally, facilities should make sure to serve beverages, including juice and water at every activity.

The resident should drink at least 100 mL of water or liquids when taking their medications. Each staff member should encourage the consumption of at least 60 mL of fluid every time they enter the resident's room to provide care or monitoring unless the patient is on a liquid-restrictive diet.

How do You Rehydrate a Dehydrated Person?

Any diagnosis of dehydration needs immediate attention. The patient's body must be replenished with sufficient fluids that could be water, popsicles, clear broth, or sports drinks.

Severely dehydrated patients will require intravenous fluids to ensure they have adequate hydration before the body's organs stop functioning.

What are the Symptoms of Dehydration?

There are specific signs that can show an elderly person is suffering from dehydration.

Nursing home staff must be trained so that they can notice when a patient may be suffering from dehydration.

The top five symptoms include dry mouth, dark urine, thirst, headache, and dry, cool skin.

Other crucial signs of dehydration include:

  • Dizziness or fatigue
  • Cracked skin
  • Flushed skin
  • Bone fractures
  • Kidney failure
  • Requests for more liquids
  • Loss of appetite
  • Chills

Nursing workers that notice any signs of dehydration must provide immediate liquids. Family members should also pay attention to any signs that a loved one is dehydrated.

Any detection of a lack of fluids should be followed by reporting concerns to a nursing home administrator and the Director of Nursing.

Unfortunately, many facilities fail to monitor residents sufficiently due to understaffing. Some medication errors can impair the thirst response, especially if the resident is taking blood pressure drugs.

Are Nursing Homes Required to Prevent Malnutrition and Dehydration?

Yes. Part of basic nursing care requires staff to monitor patient's vital signs. This includes monitoring patients to ensure they have proper nutrition and hydration.

Staff in a nursing facility should be monitoring food intake and fluid intake in the medical chart of each patient who is at risk for malnutrition or dehydration.

Sample Illinois Nursing Home Dehydration & Malnutrition Settlements

$950,000 Settlement; Chicago Nursing Home Malnutrition

The 79-year-old elderly woman entered a Chicago, IL nursing facility for assistance with her mental and physical disabilities. Doctors deemed her a risk for falls, bedsores, and dehydration.

Eventually, a Stage I pressure sore developed along her spine in the coccyx region that eventually degraded to a life-threatening Stage IV decubitus ulcer.

Both malnutrition and dehydration exacerbated her condition, which developed into deteriorating sepsis (bloodstream infection).

The female resident died about five months after her initial bedsore diagnosis. Officials deemed that her death contributed to the decubitus ulcer (bedsore), dehydration, and other health conditions.

The decedent's surviving family members brought an Illinois wrongful death claim against the facility. The plaintiffs alleged that nursing home neglect and medical malpractice caused their mother's bedsores, dehydration, and other health problems that led to her death.

$625,000 Settlement, Chicago Nursing Home Malnutrition

An eighty-year-old nursing home resident was at heightened risk for developing severe health issues due to her age and health, including nursing home malnutrition and dehydration. Sadly, the staff members failed to provide proper care of providing the woman with quality food and liquids that could have prevented some of her health issues.

Nurses and nursing assistants never supervised her eating or drinking or helped her during mealtime, a violation of state laws. Her health condition declined quickly due to dehydration, malnutrition, and hypernatremia.

Hospital professionals diagnosed her with sepsis just before her death. The woman's surviving children filed a lawsuit against the facilities and nursing staff who cared for her. The plaintiffs and defendants agreed to a negotiated $625,000 out-of-court private settlement.

$861,725 Settlement; Home Abuse and Neglect

A female in her mid-thirties was admitted to a nursing facility due to several mental health issues, including depression and schizophrenia.
Her conditions affected her ability to swallow and eat properly.

The nursing staff at the facility neglected her needs and abused her emotionally, physically, and sexually. As a result of her lack of treatment, she developed bedsores, problems with dehydration, and weight loss.

In time, her bed sores became infected and progressed to osteomyelitis. Not long after, she succumbed to her medical complications at the age of thirty-four years.

Her surviving parents and three sisters filed a civil lawsuit against the facility under the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act, citing terrible treatment.

$500,000 Settlement

An elderly resident was often neglected during her stay at the care facility before her untimely death at seventy-four years old. A lack of care at the facility led to the development of bedsores, dehydration-related, and osteomyelitis (bone infection).

The victim's estate attorneys investigated the case and determined that the nursing homes deficient care led to the woman's death. The attorneys filed a civil lawsuit claiming nursing home negligence and wrongful death, seeking compensation for pain, costs, and loss.

Is Your Loved One Suffering From Malnutrition of Dehydration in a Nursing Facility

Is your loved one suffering from an injury or died from malnutrition and dehydration?

If so, the nursing home abuse attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC are available for a free consultation to discuss the merits of your compensation case.

Our Illinois nursing home malnutrition attorneys have experience with neglect cases and can investigate the circumstances that may have led to the dehydration or malnutrition death of your loved one.

Contact us today at 888-424-5757 (toll-free phone call) or the contact form on our website to learn about your loved ones legal options.

All discussions with our nursing home abuse lawyers remain confidential through an attorney-client relationship. Please don't reveal sensitive information with our law office in a voicemail, text message, contact form.

Our legal team is still resolving malnutrition dehydration cases during the COVID-19 crisis to provide immediate legal representation and defend your rights for justice.

We currently represent clients throughout the Illinois area, including the following localities: Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, Will County, Aurora, Naperville, Elgin, Joliet, LaSalle, Orland Park, Waukegan, and Berwyn.

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Jonathan did a great job helping my family navigate through a lengthy lawsuit involving my grandmother's death in a nursing home. Through every step of the case, Jonathan kept my family informed of the progression of the case. Although our case eventually settled at a mediation, I really was impressed at how well prepared Jonathan was to take the case to trial. Lisa