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Cancer Detection and New Jersey Nursing Home Neglect

Failure to diagnose and properly treat cancer is a major problem at any age. That includes senior citizens in nursing homes.

As nursing home neglect lawyers, we know that abuse and neglect can take many forms. It can range from outright assault to negligent inattentiveness that leads to falls and wandering off episodes. It can also involve allowing bedsores and other pressure sores to develop in residents with mobility issues when staff do not provide sufficient assistance.

These are all significant threats to vulnerable elderly people. Yet none is as consistently lethal as failure to diagnose cancer.

How could it be that cancer goes under diagnosed in nursing homes and other care facilities? It could be that nursing home staff somehow think that monitoring for cancer becomes less important when elderly residents have other health conditions.

The existence of other health conditions, however, should not be an excuse for failure to monitor elderly people for cancer and other progressive diseases.

After all, cancer is a common occurrence among senior citizens. According to the National Cancer Institute, about 60 percent of all diagnosed cancers are among people over the age of 65. People in that age group are also over 15 times more likely to die of cancer than those who are younger.

Early detection and treatment are crucial in dealing with cancer. This is because cancer is a progressive disease in which cancerous cells keep growing and spreading unless they are confronted with treatment.

This reality does not change just because someone is already in a nursing home. Failure to diagnose cancer in a nursing home could lead to an untimely death - and potentially a wrongful death lawsuit.

Source: "Undiagnosed Cancer in Nursing Homes," Parent Your Parents.com, 12-6-11

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