Feeding Tube Complications
Loved ones often fail to meet their most basic nutritional needs as they grow older. For example, it is estimated that 40 to 60 percent of nursing home residents have issues with swallowing food. As a result, feeding tubes are at least temporarily necessary to assist elderly people in meeting their nutritional needs. In these situations, it is very important that nursing home staff monitor the resident with a feeding tube to ensure there are no complications. While this should be standard, unfortunately residents with feeding tubes are often denied the care they deserve. The consequences of this neglect can be disastrous.
Feeding tubes should be a last resort for patients facing nutritional challenges. Feeding tubes can cause psychological trauma, physical injuries, and even loss of function. For instance, potential complications include aspiration, constipation, diarrhea, fluid or electrolyte imbalance, GI bleeding, hyperglycemia (high blood sugar), hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), nausea, and skin sight irritation. More commonly, tubes can become blocked or displaced resulting in dehydration and starvation. In most situations, proper patient monitoring makes these complications completely avoidable.
The most avoidable misconduct occurs when a provider prescribes a feeding tube unnecessarily. Often times, caregivers in nursing homes prescribe feeding tubes because the resident takes too long to feed or eats too slow. In other situations, nursing home staff fail to remove a feeding tube after it is no longer medically necessary. This is unacceptable given the possible mental and physical ramifications of feeding tubes. Put simply, the dignity and well-being of loved ones should not take a back seat to the convenience of their caregivers.
Nursing home abuse and negligence claims involve many complex legal and medical issues. Having the right attorney is essential to recovering what you deserve. Our Midwest nursing home abuse law firm will do everything possible to assist you in obtaining the maximum compensation you deserve. More importantly, our firm will serve as an ally that will give you and your family the respect and compassion it needs. Contact us to protect your family today.