After nursing home stay, bedsores lead to man's agonizing death

After nursing home stay, bedsores lead to man's agonizing death

Frank Williams died Dec. 21, 2016, from sepsis, with bedsores he suffered at Safire Rehabilitation at Northtowns, a nursing home in the Town of Tonawanda, listed as a likely cause of the sepsis.  [Courtesy Photo]

Frank Williams died Dec. 21, 2016, from sepsis, with bedsores he suffered at Safire Rehabilitation at Northtowns, a nursing home in the Town of Tonawanda, listed as a likely cause of the sepsis. [Courtesy Photo]

Frank L. Williams didn't have bedsores when he left Kenmore Mercy Hospital and entered a nursing home for rehabilitation after a stroke.

That fact is established in a document detailing his condition when he entered Safire Rehabilitation of Northtowns in the Town of Tonawanda.

Four months later, when he returned to Kenmore Mercy, the 82-year-old retired ironworker had seven bedsores on the lower half of his body. He died 14 days later from cardiac arrest caused by sepsis – an extreme response to infection – according to his death certificate. Hospital records cite infections from bedsores as the most likely cause of the sepsis.

"They told me this is the worst case of bedsores they have ever seen from that nursing home," his son, Mark F. Williams Sr., recalled doctors and nurses telling him in the emergency room. "The sores were black. I'd never seen that before. I was shocked. I thought it was the black plague."

Williams' case illustrates how vulnerable individuals who go to poorly rated and understaffed nursing homes for rehabilitation can quickly succumb to preventable but lethal ailments like bedsores.

Caregivers at a New York nursing home have neglected to prevent bedsores for more than 1 in 10 of their high-risk patients, leading to a man's death from infection, Lou Michel reported for The Buffalo News.

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