The family of an elderly, ill woman is pointing the finger at an Arlington Heights, Illinois, nursing home, claiming negligence. And the family has some stomach-turning evidence of the alleged nursing home neglect. The family complained to a Cook County Circuit Court that the lack of care provided by the nursing home caused 57 maggots to grow in the 90-year-old woman’s ear.
A few months ago, one of the maggots was spotted in the woman’s ear as a nurse was caring for her. Upon the discovery, staff from the nursing home summoned an ambulance to take the woman, who is an Alzheimer’s patient, to a hospital emergency room.
With one of her daughters looking on, doctors extracted the maggots from the elderly woman’s left ear while fly larvae also crawled out. The daughter detailed this disgusting sight in the lawsuit, which seeks $50,000 in damages.
After sending the maggots to a lab to be examined, researchers determined that they were three days old. This means that, for three days, the nursing home staff failed to notice 57 maggots moving around in the woman’s ear. This condition even escaped nursing home staff as they administered prescription ear drops to the woman.
This isn’t the first complaint the family has made against the nursing home. Family members complained to the Department of Public Health earlier in the year, but no violations were spotted.
Officials at the nursing home have deflected blame for the accident, saying that the level of care and the environment of the home did not contribute to the woman’s nasty condition. They chalked it up to a freak accident.
The home houses 372 patients and has a special Alzheimer’s care unit, which houses 80 individuals.
The woman now resides in a different home.
Source: Chicago Tribune, “Nursing home sued after maggots found in patient’s ear,” Sally Ho, Dec. 6, 2012