Nursing home residents are often more susceptible to choking injuries than individuals in the general population. For instance, nursing home residents may suffer from certain neurological conditions that may adversely affect their ability to swallow, such as a stroke or brain injury, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, or muscular dystrophy. Certain cancers, as well as radiation treatments, can make it difficult or impossible for an individual to swallow. Likewise, one of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease may be difficulty in chewing and swallowing. Finally, aging itself may make it more difficult for an individual to swallow, simply because so many muscles are involved when an individual tries to swallow.
Neglect by nursing home staff often can lead to choking injuries for residents, as well. Some residents may need close supervision whenever eating or drinking in order to avoid the risk of choking. Staff may need to change the form or type of nutrition that a resident receives in order to minimize the chances of choking. Furthermore, staff will need to give special consideration to residents who are dependent on breathing tubes, in order to avoid brain injury and even death.
The effects of choking can be swift and severe. Even a short choking episode can lead to the patient’s air supply being cut off, which, in turn, can cause permanent brain damage. Longer episodes of choking may even lead to death.
The nursing home abuse lawyers of Boller & Vaughan pride themselves on advocating on behalf of clients who have been injured in some way, whether it be through choking, suffocation, or another type of incident. We can seek compensation for you through the legal claim process, while you and your family can concentrate on healing, recovering from any trauma that you might have experienced, and moving on with your life. Don’t hesitate to call our office today and learn how we can help.