Bedsores, also known as “pressure sores”
or “pressure ulcers,” are caused by lying or sitting still for long periods of time. Advanced bed sores are known in the medical community as “never events,” meaning an individual who enters a nursing home or hospital without bed sores should never develop one that is allowed to progress to stage 3 or 4. Pressure sores occur through neglect of nursing home residents who cannot move themselves and need to be assisted or turned on a regular schedule.
Bed sores form as the constant pressure of the patient’s body first causes skin and then underlying tissue to break down. Pressure sores are more likely to develop where a person has little fat or muscle between skin and bone, such as at the spine, tailbone, shoulder blades, hips, heels and elbows. A bedsore starts as a tender spot, and if not treated promptly can become a painful bleeding wound that can eventually cause extensive damage to muscle and other surrounding tissue.