Nursing Home Fails to Notice 57 Maggots in Female Patient's Ear
A nursing home taking care of a 90-year-old woman suffering from Alzheimer's disease is facing a negligence lawsuit after a hospital found a total of 57 maggots growing in her left ear. The elderly woman's family believes that the incident indicates that her care was characterized by abuse and neglect and was far from a minimally reasonable standard of care.
Damages are sought for medical malpractice, and the complaint asserts that her injuries were severe. Evidently, a nurse at the nursing home finally saw one of the maggots crawling around in the woman's ear. The resident was then rushed to a nearby hospital via ambulance operated by emergency personnel. At the hospitals emergency room, the woman's daughter, who rushed there to be by her mothers side, was horrified to see numerous maggots removed from the left ear. Fly larvae kept crawling out of the ear, presenting a disgusting spectacle.
While medical personnel labored to remove them, more and more maggots kept emerging, until the total reached an astonishing 57. Lab tests on the extracted maggots indicated that they were approximately 72 hours old. After treatment, the woman was immediately moved to another nursing home, to try to prevent a re-occurrence of the problem.
To make matters worse, the woman had actually been diagnosed with an ear condition requiring medication about a week before the incident. Nursing home personnel administered prescribed ear drops to her, purportedly as recently as the evening before the maggots were discovered. The question of how nursing home personnel could have failed to see as big a problem as 57 maggots in a residents ear at a time when they were already administering prescription ear-drops for a problem, or even in the course of doing ordinary hygiene on an Alzheimer's patient, such as washing her hair, remains unanswered.
The family had previously complained about conditions at the nursing home to state regulators. State inspectors were unable to establish a violation of state licensing laws out in the open when they visited in response to the complaint.
Approximately 80 patients at the facility suffer from Alzheimer's, and they are kept in a special section of the nursing home. There are 372 residents in the home overall. Patients with Alzheimer's in many instances, may not notice when unhygienic incidents occur or basic sanitation is ignored, and may not be capable of articulately complaining when they are experiencing pain and injury. With such patients, it is especially important that medical personnel and all nursing home staff take extra care to be careful about their well being, when they often are unable to speak up for themselves.
The nursing home management was quick to flatly deny that anything at the nursing home was actually wrong. It described the incident as a freak event, and claimed that there was essentially nothing wrong with the care the woman had been receiving. The woman's family begs to differ, and seeks to have a jury award damages of $50,000 or more to vindicate their elderly relatives right to decent and humane treatment.