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Goudie & Kohn, P.A. Tampa Nursing Home Abuse Attorney
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Tampa Malnutrition Abuse Attorney

Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Attorneys Assisting Clients with Malnutrition Claims

Nursing homes are required by law to provide a certain level of care to patients and residents to ensure that their nutritional needs are met and that they have the medications they need. However, malnutrition is a problem in nursing homes across the state of Florida. It is extremely important for family members to be aware of the risks of malnutrition abuse, and to recognize that malnutrition can lead to other serious harms.

If you have an elderly loved one in a nursing home and have concerns about her health, you should speak with a Tampa malnutrition abuse attorney to learn more about options that may be available.

Signs and Symptoms of Malnutrition in a Tampa Nursing Home

As the Mayo Clinic emphasizes, good nutrition is essential for people of all ages but especially for vulnerable seniors. Some of the most common signs of malnutrition include but are not limited to:

  • Weight loss that is unexplained;
  • Changes in how the senior’s clothing fits;
  • Wounds that will not heal;
  • Dental problems;
  • Physical weakness;
  • Falls;
  • Emotional changes; and
  • Other unexplained behavior.

Malnutrition Can Cause Additional Harm

When a senior experiences malnutrition, this can lead to additional injuries. According to the Mayo Clinic, the following are just some of the problems that can result from malnutrition:

  • Weakened immune system;
  • Increase in infections;
  • Wounds that have trouble healing or will not heal;
  • Muscle weakness;
  • Decreased bone mass;
  • Falls;
  • Broken bones or fractures;
  • Increased risk of hospitalization; and
  • Increased risk of death.

While certain signs can point toward malnutrition, it is also important to spend time with your elderly family member to get a better sense of whether malnutrition may be an issue. You should observe your elderly family member’s eating habits, and you should also be alert for any other problems that result from malnutrition, especially any physical weakness or physical injuries.

Is Malnutrition a Sign of Abuse or Neglect?

Malnutrition can result from nursing home abuse or neglect. In most situations, both malnutrition and dehydration occur as a result of insufficient care. When nursing homes do not have adequate staffing, many patients do not receive frequent care due to the limitations of a small staff. As a result, elderly patients may not receive proper food, vitamins, or other nutrients.

However, in some situations, malnutrition abuse is in fact the result of intentional acts committed by a nursing home staff member or another caregiver. When a senior does not have the physical or mental capacity to feed herself, she must rely on staff members at the facility to do so. A staff member can engage in malnutrition abuse by intentionally depriving an elderly patient of the nutrients and fluids she needs in order to maintain health and well-being.

Contact a Malnutrition Abuse Attorney in Tampa 

Elderly patients in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities should not have to suffer from malnutrition due to inadequate care. If you have concerns about a senior in a facility, it is important to speak with a malnutrition abuse attorney in Tampa about your options. Contact Goudie & Kohn, P.A. to learn more about how we help families with elder abuse and neglect cases in the Tampa area.

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