Home Nursing Home Malnutrition

Nursing Home Malnutrition Lawyer in New Mexico


What Is Elder Malnutrition in Nursing Homes?

Nutrition is an essential factor in health and longevity, particularly among older people. Nursing homes have a responsibility under federal laws to meet residents’ nutritional needs. Despite these requirements, many older people residing in nursing homes are malnourished or dehydrated, and many are underweight. If you have seen signs of malnutrition in a loved one living a nursing home, call the Sorey Law Firm P.L.L.C. at (903) 212-2822 right away. We represent victims of nursing home abuse and neglect and their families.

Malnutrition occurs when an elderly nursing home resident is either not getting enough food or is not getting foods that contain adequate amounts of essential vitamins, minerals, and nutrients for basic levels of health. As stated by the Mayo Clinic, malnutrition in older people can lead to a range of health issues, including:

  • Weakened immune system
  • Increased risk of infection
  • Poor wound healing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Decreased bone mass
  • Higher risk of falls and fractures
  • Higher risk of hospitalization
  • Increased risk of death

Back to Top

What Causes Malnutrition in Nursing Homes?

As stated in an article published by The Commonwealth Fund, malnutrition and dehydration have many causes or contributing factors in nursing homes. These factors include:

  • Inadequate staffing: Many nursing homes are understaffed. One certified nursing assistant (CNA) typically helps seven to nine residents eat and drink at each meal during the day and helps up to 12 to 15 residents with the evening meal. Ideally, the ratio would be one CNA for every two to three residents who require assistance with eating.
  • High yearly turnover rate: High turnover of nursing home staff leads to inconsistencies in resident care.
  • Chronic conditions, such as depression and dementia: These conditions and the side effects of their treatment are major factors in nursing home resident malnutrition. Older people with depression are more likely to experience weight loss.
  • Limited choices in diet: Nursing home residents are typically not offered many choices in what they eat. Cultural and ethnic food preferences are often ignored.
  • Poor dental health: Oral health problems can affect appetite and make it difficult for older residents to eat.

Malnutrition and dehydration in nursing homes could be prevented with appropriate evaluation of individual residents, proper meal planning, and effective delivery of fluids and nutritious foods to residents. Unfortunately, many nursing homes nationwide fail to provide this most basic type of care.

Back to Top

Types of Malnutrition in Nursing Homes

Malnutrition among elderly nursing home residents can be divided into four different categories as to the main causes:

  • Physical malnutrition: This involves physical factors that affect the resident’s nutrition, such as dental problems, diminished taste and smell, abdominal issues, chronic illness, and medications that interfere with the absorption of nutrients.
  • Mental malnutrition: In this category, depression or dementia can lead to malnutrition. Dementia affects the ability to perform daily tasks. Medications to treat depression can cause a lack of appetite.
  • Socioeconomic malnutrition: Economic and social issues, such as low income, social isolation, and loss of interest in eating can lead to malnutrition in older people. In nursing homes, malnutrition may result from loss of interest in eating caused by medications, grief, food lacking in flavor due to dietary restrictions, and lack of mobility.
  • Malnutrition from neglect: Nursing home residents can become malnourished and dehydrated when negligent staff do not offer enough food or fluids and fail to monitor the consumption of proper nutrients. If your elderly loved one is suffering from malnutrition for these reasons, you may have a negligence claim against the nursing home.

Back to Top

What Are the Symptoms of Malnutrition?

According to the Mayo Clinic, it is a good idea to visit the nursing home at mealtimes to observe your loved one’s eating habits. Make sure you know what medications your loved one is taking, as many drugs can affect appetite, digestion, and nutrient absorption. Be alert for red flags, including:

  • Weight loss (note any changes in how your loved one’s clothing fits)
  • Poor wound healing
  • Dental problems
  • Weakness resulting in falls

Back to Top

Nursing Home Malnutrition Facts

  • At least one-third of the 1.6 million nursing home residents in the U.S. are malnourished or dehydrated.
  • Malnutrition and dehydration can cause or aggravate serious health problems, including tooth decay, anemia, broken bones, and low blood pressure.
  • As reported in the article, one study found that as many as 85% of elderly residents in some U.S. nursing homes are malnourished.
  • Between 30% and 50% of residents in some nursing homes are underweight.
  • In some American nursing homes, the extent of malnutrition and dehydration is comparable to what is found in poor, developing countries, with an inadequate intake of food compounded by repeatedly occurring infections.
  • Undernourished nursing home residents suffer from a number of health issues that could be easily prevented with proper nutrition.

Back to Top

Why You Need an Attorney

To recover compensation in a nursing home malnutrition claim, you will need to prove that negligence of the facility or its staff caused your loved one’s malnutrition and injuries. Our experienced nursing home neglect lawyer can thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding your loved one’s malnutrition, collect and preserve evidence, identify liable parties, take action to correct the problem, and tenaciously pursue the compensation your family deserves.

Back to Top

Why Choose Us?

  • At the Sorey Law Firm P.L.L.C., we offer a free consultation and work on a contingency fee basis, which means you pay us no fees until we recover compensation for you.
  • Our lead attorney is a trial lawyer with many years of experience representing plaintiffs in personal injury matters and as 10 years previous experience as a law enforcement officer.
  • Our firm delivers high-quality, personalized, client-centered legal services. We know personal injury law in New Mexico – it’s all we do.

Back to Top

Get in Touch with Our Firm

Our legal team at the Sorey Law Firm P.L.L.C. is committed to holding negligent nursing homes accountable and helping injured victims pursue the compensation they deserve. Contact us today if your elderly loved one has suffered malnutrition caused by nursing home neglect.

Back to Top

Schedule your free consultation by calling our Albuquerque Nursing Home Abuse lawyer at schedule a free consultation.

Our Results

$4,000,000
18-wheeler Fell Asleep And Killed Driver.

View More

Dan Sorey & The Team

Attorney Dan Sorey founded The Sorey Law Firm, P.L.L.C. with the desire to establish his own legal practice with personal, client-centered legal services that address the specific needs of accident victims and injured parties.


Dan Sorey
Attorney / Founder

John Hull
Attorney

Derek Gilliland
Attorney

In The News

Becky Alldredge named Paralegal of the Year

A very special congratulations to Becky Alldredge for being selected as the Paralegal of the Year by the Northeast…

Texas ranked LAST in US for nursing home care

Of the 13 nursing homes in Gregg county two did not submit enough information to be ranked and 9 were ranked…

Impaired Driving is not just drinking

Missing two hours of sleep can be the same as driving after drinking three beers!

Read more articles

Our Blog

Oct
28

Insurance Denials: Why You Shouldn’t Take “No” for an Answer

Policyholders pay their premiums, and, in return, they expect to have insurance coverage when the need …

Oct
15

Why a Truck Crash Isn’t the Same as a Car Crash (and You Need a Different Lawyer)

If you are looking for an attorney after a serious truck crash, you should know handling car …

Oct
1

What’s in a Name? That Which We Call Trucks

The U.S. government classifies trucks according to their maximum operating weight, which includes the …

Read more blog posts

The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individualcase or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receiptor viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

© 2019 Sorey Law Firm P.L.L.C. - All rights reserved | Website Design and Legal Internet Marketing by: SLS Consulting SLS Consulting