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Are elderly patients more likely to get worse at hospitals?

When an Indiana resident goes to a doctor to seek treatment for an ailment, they expect the medical professional to ask them questions about their general health as well, to get an accurate picture of their life and health prior to the current condition. According to some though, medical professionals are inexperienced in dealing with elderly patients and as a result, can end up prescribing medicines or procedures that clash with their current condition, ending up worsening their condition.

When an elderly patient walks into the doctor's office, they are often not asked about the difficulties they face day-to-day, and are prescribed tests and medicines that could compromise their health. For example, a doctor may ask an elderly patient who has become acutely confused at the hospital to undergo a CT scan, without taking into account the fact that the dye involved in the test could cause kidney failure in someone who's kidney function is already impaired. According to some, this is because health care systems fund tests for elderly patients, not intensive counseling sessions that would detail their medical history and daily functioning abilities.

After receiving treatment for a condition, many elderly patients go to a skilled nursing facility for rehabilitation. Once again, they are dealing with nurses and doctors who are unaware of their previous conditions and can end up contracting an infection or new medical problems at a nursing home.

This lack of communication and focus on technology and medicine rather than dialogue with elderly patients often leads to an elderly patient coming out worse than they went into the hospital or nursing home. If this happens, it may be possible to hold the negligent medical professionals accountable for their lack of care through a medical malpractice suit. The compensation received could cover ongoing medical complications due to the worsened condition.

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The Law Office of Nick Stein

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