What is a Heel Decubitus Ulcer?

Has your family member been diagnosed with a left heel decubitus ulcer or a right heel decubitus ulcer? At decubitusulcervictims.com, we strive to educate and enable victims of heel decubitus ulcers to understand their rights relating to their heel decubitus ulcer.

Heel Decubitus Ulcers – What are they and why do they form?

Decubitus ulcers (pressure sores or bedsores) form due to unrelieved pressure on certain areas of the skin. Decubitus ulcers form due to patient neglect and a failure to turn and reposition a patient every 2 hours (the law requires a patient to be turned and repositioned at least every 2 hours). If a nursing home resident or hospital patient is not repositioned every 2 hours, their skin will breakdown and open up into a wound. This wound is called a decubitus ulcer. Decubitus ulcers commonly form on patient’s heels, elbows, buttocks, sacrum and lower back. Specifically, heel decubitus ulcers form when the patient’s heels are not offloaded.

Decubitus Ulcers on the Heels – How are they prevented?

Heel decubitus ulcers are easily preventable through good care. When a patient or nursing home resident is identified as a ‘high risk’ for heel pressure sores, the nursing home or hospital must take preventative measures to ensure the prevention of decubitus ulcers on the heels. Prevention of heel decubiti can be achieved through special offloading heel pressure sore boots, decubitus ulcer preventative creams and regular turning and repositioning of the patient every 2 hours.

Treatment of Heel Decubitus Ulcers

If caught early enough, heel decubitus ulcers can be treated through good care. Treatment options for heel decubitus ulcer wounds include: heel decubitus ulcer creams, offloading heel boots, heel decubitus ulcer wound care and regular offloading and pressure relief every 2 hours.

What are Bilateral Heel Decubitus Ulcers?

Right and Left Decubitus Ulcers

Both right heel and left heel have developed decubitus ulcer (pressure sores)

Bilateral heel decubitus ulcers, or bilateral heel decubiti, means that a patient suffers from heel decubitus wounds on both heels. Meaning a bilateral heel decubitus patient has a decubitus ulcer on both their right heel and their left heel.

Heel Decubitus Ulcers – Staging

You may see a “stage” or a “grade” attached to your heel decubitus ulcer wound. Click here to learn more about the staging of heel decubitus ulcers. This is how medical providers determine the severity of the heel pressure sore. A Stage 1 decubitus heel wound is a largely superficial skin deep wound. A Stage 2 decubitus heel ulcer is slightly deeper than a Stage 1, possibly appearing as a heel rash or a heel. A Stage 3 heel decubitus wound, is a cavernous wound with noticeable depth. The surround skin may be compromised and there may be an odorous oozing discharge. A Stage 4 heel decubitus ulcer is usually accompanied by necrosis (dead skin), undermining of the surrounding skin tissue, a deep wound (sometimes with the bone visible) and usually an gangrenous or odorous discharge.

Right and Left Heel Decubitus Ulcers – Health Risks

Heel decubitus ulcers expose the patient to a litany of disease and infection. Due to the anatomical position of the heel pressure sore and its proximity to the patient’s feet, the heel decubitus ulcer can act as an open gateway to infection. Patients who suffer with open heel decubitus ulcers may subsequently develop sepsis, blood infections, amputation, MRSA as a result of the open wounds.

Heel Decubitus Ulcer Lawsuit

If your family member developed a preventable heel decubitus ulcer at a nursing home, ALF or hospital, do the right thing and hold the neglectful staff accountable. Speak with a qualified decubitus ulcer lawyer today and learn your rights in potentially filing a decubitus ulcer lawsuit.

For a free decubitus ulcer case evaluation, contact (561) 316-7207

 

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