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Can Bedsores (pressure sores) lead to a Personal Injury Claim?

Bedsores, also known as pressure sores or decubitus ulcers, are painful and often preventable injuries that can occur when someone remains in the same position for an extended period. In cases where negligence or inadequate care contributes to the development of bedsores, victims may have grounds to file a personal injury claim.

These injuries primarily affect individuals who are bedridden or have limited mobility. Not only can bedsores lead to severe pain and discomfort, but they can also result in serious complications, including infections and tissue damage.


What causes bedsores?

Bedsores develop when constant pressure is applied to specific areas of the body, typically over bony prominences such as the hips, tailbone, heels, and elbows. Factors that increase the risk of bedsores include immobility, poor nutrition, dehydration, and medical conditions that affect blood flow or sensation. The stages of bedsores range from early signs of redness and inflammation to severe wounds that penetrate through the skin and underlying tissue, potentially exposing bones and muscles.


How can bedsores be prevented?

Preventing bedsores involves regular repositioning of the individual, maintaining proper nutrition and hydration, keeping the skin clean and dry, and using supportive surfaces such as specialised mattresses or cushions. Caregivers should conduct frequent skin assessments to detect early signs of bedsores and promptly address any issues. When bedsores do develop, appropriate wound care is essential to prevent infection and promote healing.


In what circumstances can bedsores lead to a personal injury claim?

If someone develops bedsores due to negligence or inadequate care, they may be eligible to file a personal injury claim against the responsible party. This could include healthcare facilities, nursing homes, caregivers, or other individuals or entities entrusted with the victim's care. To pursue a successful claim, the following elements typically need to be established:


Duty of Care: The responsible party owed a duty of care to the victim, meaning they were obligated to provide appropriate and reasonable care to prevent bedsores.

Breach of Duty: There was a breach of this duty, such as failure to regularly reposition the individual, provide adequate nutrition and hydration, or implement proper wound care protocols.

Causation: The breach of duty directly caused or contributed to the development of bedsores.

Damages: The victim suffered harm or damages as a result of the bedsores, which may include physical pain, medical expenses, emotional distress, and diminished quality of life.


Seeking Legal Assistance

Navigating a personal injury claim involving bedsores can be complex, requiring a thorough understanding of medical evidence, legal principles, and applicable regulations. Victims or their families are encouraged to consult with an experienced personal injury solicitor who specialises in nursing home abuse, medical malpractice, or similar areas of law. A legal expert can assess the circumstances surrounding the case, gather relevant evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and advocate for fair compensation on behalf of the victim.


Bedsores are serious injuries that can have devastating consequences for affected individuals and their families. When negligence or inadequate care leads to the development of bedsores, victims have the right to seek justice and compensation through a personal injury claim. By understanding the causes of bedsores, taking preventative measures, and seeking legal assistance when necessary, individuals can hold responsible parties accountable and obtain the support they need to recover and move forward.


If you’d like to speak with a Personal Injury expert, please contact us now or email

Sarah Sadler
  • Chartered Legal Executive
  • Head of Personal Injury

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