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Can you die from a bedsore?

AuthorAlan Curtis
PublishedJune 8, 2022
Estimated reading time:
4 minutes

You've probably heard that bedsores can be a severe problem, but do you know why? Do you know what damage they can cause? And, can you die from a bedsore?

Yes, you can die from a bedsore. Infection is the most common cause of death from a bedsore.

The pressure from lying in one position for too long cuts off circulation to the skin and underlying tissues. This allows bacteria to get into the tissue and cause an infection. If not treated, the infection can spread throughout the body and be life-threatening.

Factors that increase the risk of developing a bedsore include being elderly, having a chronic illness, being immobile, incontinence, and poor nutrition. Burns, radiation therapy, and severe trauma can also lead to an increased risk of developing a bedsore. Proper care is important in preventing or treating bedsores.

What are bedsores?

Bedsores, also known as pressure ulcers, are extremely painful and can be life-threatening. They can cause infections and lead to death in a worst-case scenario.

What are the signs of bedsores?

It's essential to know the signs of a bedsore, so you can get help right away if one appears on yourself or a loved one.

Signs that may indicate bedsore:

  • Reddened, swollen, or warm skin
  • An open sore or blister that drains pus or other fluids
  • A deep crater in the skin
  • Blackened or dead skin

If you see any of these signs, it's essential to seek medical help. Bedsores can progress quickly and can be life-threatening if left untreated. Don't wait to see if the sore goes away on its own. Get help from a medical professional as soon as possible.

How to Prevent Bed Sores

If you're caring for someone at risk of developing bedsores, it's vital to take steps to prevent them from happening. Here are a few tips for preventing bedsores:

  • Change the person's position frequently
  • Use a pressure-relieving mattress or pad
  • Keep the person's skin clean and dry
  • Don't let the person sit or lie in one position for too long
  • Inspect the person's skin regularly for any signs of redness or soreness

By following these tips, you can help prevent bed sores from developing. But even if you take all the necessary precautions, bed sores can still happen.

What to do if you have a bed sore

If you have a bed sore, there are a few things you can do to help it heal:

  • Clean the sore with mild soap and water
  • Apply an antibiotic ointment to the sore
  • Cover the sore with a sterile bandage
  • Keep the area around the sore clean and dry
  • Change your position frequently to relieve pressure on the sore

If you have a bed sore, it's important to take care of it right away. If you don't treat a bed sore, it can become infected and lead to serious health problems. So if you think you might have a bed sore, don't wait to see if it goes away on its own. Get medical help right away!

Who is most likely to get bedsores?

Bedsores can happen to anyone, but they're most common in people who cannot move on their own. Here are some of the most common risk factors for developing bed sores:

  • Being bedridden
  • Having paralysis
  • Delicate or thin skin
  • Diabetes
  • Poor diet
  • Low body fat
  • Damaged skin
  • Cold Skin

If you or a loved one fall into any of these categories, it's critical to be extra vigilant about preventing and treating bed sores.

Can Bedsores be healed?

With proper treatment, most bedsores can be healed without any lasting damage. But if they're left untreated, bedsores can lead to serious health problems, including infection and death.

If you have any concerns about a bed sore on your loved one, don't hesitate to reach out to a medical professional for help. Don't let a bed sore become a severe health hazard. Seek treatment right away if you see any signs of one.

What happens if a bedsore becomes infected?

Infection is the most serious risk for a patient with a bedsore! If a bedsore becomes infected, it can lead to sepsis which can be life-threatening.

A septic infection is caused by bacteria entering the body through broken skin or tissue. If a septic infection spreads throughout the body, it is a medical emergency that requires immediate treatment.

One type of bacteria called methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) causes many hospital infections because it's resistant to many common antibiotics. If a patient with a bedsore contracts MRSA, it can be challenging to treat.

How can I tell if a bedsore is infected?

  • The sore is getting worse
  • The area around the sore is red and swollen
  • Pus or other drainages from the wound
  • Fever
  • Bad smell from the wound
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Increased heart rate
  • Heavy breathing

Conclusion: Can you die from a bedsore?

Yes, you can die from a bedsore if it becomes infected and leads to sepsis. That's why it's so important to seek medical help right away if you think you or your loved one has a bed sore! 

If caught early, most bedsores can be healed without any lasting damage. But if they're left untreated, they can lead to serious health problems. So don't wait to get help if you see any signs of a bed sore. Seek medical attention right away!

If you feel you or a loved one has suffered from a bedsore caused by medical negligence, get in touch with our specialist claim team here. You could be entitled to up to £40,000 in compensation.

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Alan Curtis
Alan Curtis graduated with a Law degree from the University of Westminster in 1988. He passed the Solicitors final examination in London in 1989. After training in a central London practice, he qualified as a Solicitor in 1992. He then worked in Yateley, Surrey, in general litigation before moving to Cornwall and specialising in personal injuries and clinical negligence.
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