Nursing homes and their employees have a responsibility to protect the safety of their residents, which includes ensuring they have adequate water and intervening if symptoms of dehydration appear.
When a person gets older, they become less able to retain water and may have trouble realizing when they are thirsty. Residents of nursing homes may have mobility issues or medical conditions that prevent them from accessing or drinking water without assistance. Elderly adults living in these facilities may also have reduced mental faculties and are thus not able to consistently communicate their needs.
If your loved one became seriously ill due to late-stage dehydration, they are likely a victim of nursing home neglect, and you may be able to seek compensation from the responsible parties. Our Albuquerque nursing home dehydration lawyers understand how to effectively advocate for families in these situations and can help you take legal action against the appropriate parties. Our team at the Harvey & Foote Law Firm has handled thousands of these cases in New Mexico and is ready to put our hometown advantage to work for you.
You Deserve Justice
Work With Our Dedicated New Mexico Team
What Are the Causes of Dehydration in New Mexico Nursing Homes?
Anyone can become dehydrated if they do not drink enough fluids, though older adults tend to become dehydrated faster than younger adults. Many illnesses trigger symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea that can accelerate the onset of dehydration. Certain commonly used medications can also trigger increased sweating and urination, which will also make it easier to become dehydrated. Some levels of dehydration may be unavoidable, as it can be impossible to predict when someone will become ill or how their body will respond to a new medication. Fortunately, early-stage dehydration can be safely reversed if it is detected and addressed quickly.
Signs of Dehydration in New Mexico Nursing Homes
Nursing home staff should be trained to recognize the signs of dehydration in residents. Any medical professional who sees a resident should also be able to detect dehydration issues. Unfortunately, nursing home staff and medical professionals are often overworked, making them more likely to make mistakes or overlook symptoms. Consequently, you need to be aware of what to look out for if you notice your loved one appears unwell.
Symptoms of early-stage dehydration include:
- Dry mouth or cough
- Swollen feet
- Loss of appetite
- Low blood pressure
Early-stage dehydration can typically be resolved by drinking fluids until symptoms improve or disappear. If nothing is done, however, early-stage dehydration can advance to late-stage dehydration, which can be life-threatening and require emergency medical intervention.
Symptoms of late-stage dehydration include:
- Absence of sweating
- Muscle twitching
- Confusion or slurring
- Temperature exceeding 102 degrees
If you notice signs of early-stage dehydration, be sure to inform the nursing home staff and ask questions about the level of care your loved one is receiving. Do not wait to call 9-1-1 if your loved one is exhibiting symptoms of late-stage dehydration, as their life may be in danger.
If you suspect neglect is the cause of your loved one’s dehydration, get in touch with the Harvey & Foote Law Firm. Our Albuquerque nursing home dehydration attorneys can help you report suspected mistreatment, get your loved one to safety, and explore your legal options.
Long-Term Effects of Dehydration on Nursing Home Residents
Though late-stage dehydration can be reversed with the appropriate treatment, it may still result in long-term adverse health consequences. Recurring complications that can result from severe dehydration can include seizures, kidney problems, comas, urinary tract infections (UTIs), and brain swelling, all of which can affect a resident’s comfort and quality of life. This is why it is so important that nursing home staff and medical professionals be trained to catch signs of dehydration early. Waiting too long to initiate treatment can lead to permanent damage or even result in death.
What Damages Can I Recover in a Nursing Home Neglect Lawsuit?
Depending on the circumstances of the neglect, you may be able to file a lawsuit against and seek compensation from one or more responsible parties, which may include the nursing home and its owners and managers. Any party whose neglect violates the duty of care owed to nursing home residents may become liable for the consequences of the resulting dehydration (and other health consequences). We can ascertain liability and advise who you should consider taking legal action against.
Our Albuquerque nursing home dehydration lawyers can help your family get compensation for all damages, including:
- Past, current, and future medical expenses
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If your loved one became dangerously dehydrated due to neglect, we are ready to help you hold responsible parties accountable. Contact us online or call (505) 295-2245 to discuss your case with one of our attentive legal professionals today.
“The team at Harvey and Foote are wonderful and compassionate people. They have worked so hard to help us after losing our father due to neglect of care. They continue to fight for our family we appreciate them so much.”Michael C.
“Harvey & Foote Law Firm is the team you want looking out for your best interest. You can rest knowing they are on your side. The many obstacles facing your case will be met by their dedicated team of professionals.”Norberto G.
I appreciate everyone's hard work and dedication.
“Having the BEST attorneys on our side brought about an even better than expected outcome. Thank you, Dusti, Jennifer, and all of your amazing staff!!”Mara H.