Hospital Assessment " Care "


Registered User
Sep 19, 2005
Hi All, I need advice please.
My mom was admitted into hospital last Thursday for assessment.
She had been getting up in the early hours and doing lots of things like taking the cussions off the settee, pictures off the walls, scattering sugar, porridge oats and coffee all over the house. We made an emergency appointment with her consultant at the mental health hospital and he wanted to admit her straight away but we had to wait for a bed. She was admitted a week ago today on the 5th. We had to tell her the "smiley" doctor, as she calls him wanted to do some tests and we were to take her. When the nurse told her she had to stay in for a few days she cried and said she would never have gone if she knew.
The doctor said she will be in there for several weeks but she will probably never go home again as she will be found a place in a care home.

We have been to see her every day and she has settled in well. There are only six patient's in the unit. She has made a friend and she was so happy , laughing and joking, it seemed just a little bit of mom back, until Monday. She has gone quiet and is now shuffling around and very confused.
Yesterday when I got there, I knelt in front of her,gave her a kiss and held her hands. Her wrists were covered in bruises. She hadn't got a clue how they got there. I asked if I could bath her as she hadn't had one at all. I was told she had refused one that morning. I took her and undressed her and she has bruises on her upper arms.
When I had settled her in the lounge I asked to see the nurse in charge. She got moms care file and asked if I was aware that she had a fall the night before?
"No I wasn't"

She hadn't been told herself.

When I told her about the bruises she asked me to show her.
My hand fitted perfectly where the bruises are and my thumb print was in the exact place.
It looks as if someone has held mom's wrist's.
The staff nurse said she really didn't know how it had happened but said she would inform her manager and sent for the doctor who came at once to look. Again I put my hand around mom's wrist and voiced my fears, she just nodded.
Mom was put in there for her safety she was never bruised at home.

Have I done enough by bringing it to the attention of the management ?
Last edited:


Registered User
May 14, 2006
Dear Suptown Girl,
Yes, of course you have done the right thing, to bring the bruising to the attention of the nursing staff and it looks as though it will be investigated properly. There could be a reasonable explanation, perhaps somebody was trying to stop your mother from hurting herself, or another patient was involved in an incident. If a staff member was acting improperly, then hopefully they will be disciplined and dealt with appropriately.
My Mum is in a Nursing Home and there have sometimes been bruises on her arms or legs, because she takes steroids for her rheumatoid arthritis and these cause her to bruise very easily, at the slightest touch. She would bruise easily when she lived at home too. I believe there are other medications which can also cause bruising.
At one time, my Mum did say that one of the nurses was a bit rough with her and I told the Matron about this, without mentioning any names, because I wasn't quite sure if Mum knew for certain who the nurse was. Since then, the staff have used a hoist to stand Mum up to move her, rather than trying to lift her by touching her body. Mum can't walk any more since breaking her hip.
I think it does help if relatives are alert to any injuries and I always ask about any unexplained bruises or grazes. So far these have always been well documented and explained to my satisfaction. Mum hasn't complained again about anyone being rough with her.
I hope you receive a satisfactory explanation about your mother's bruising and the doctors are able to assess her and recommend the best possible care plan to meet her needs. It is a worrying time when you don't know your relative's carers well enough to trust them fully.


Registered User
Jan 31, 2004
near London
Hi suptowngirl

firstly, well spotted.

then, good move to report it and get the manager and doctor involved.

I'd be asking for the hospital to make an investigation as to how the bruising happened. Not formal, at this stage, just make sure they go back down the chain to find out what was happening.

Bruises that fit a handprint may not in themselves be more than a staff member trying to ensure no greater damage came to your Mom. Bruises can appear even with light but sustained holding of a limb, but we always have to know the circumstances.

An example - at Easter I visited my Jan and, as I often do, I started to give her leg a massage - she was in her special chair because it was a special Easter 'do' and staff needed all residents in the same place.

As I raised one trouser leg, I saw the side of her leg was bleeding. None of the staff had noticed it because it was obscured by her trousers. As I checked, I could see that her constant movement made her leg rub against the soft fabric, and she was just constantly abrading it.

I brought it to the attention of the staff - nurse in charge, home manager, and explained the reason, and asked them to dress the wound and keep an eye out.

For someone with dementia, the slightest thing can cause damage. The key thing is to try to ensure that the same thing doesn't happen again, that different actions are taken in a similar situation.

As I drove home, the nurse rang me and told me the actions they had taken, the treatment given.

I checked her leg when I visited the next day and it was fine.

This was at a specialist care home. An assessment ward in a hospital is a different thing. They are often badly organised to care for the very patients they are assessing!

Best to keep on the case.

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
Hi suptowngirl,

The actions you took in reponse to seeing the bruising on your mother were spot on.

You brought the bruises to the attention of a nurse, and have caused them to be recorded and observed by a staff nurse and doctor.

The staff now know you are aware, and hopefully if any bruising occurs in the future, it will be recorded in your mother`s notes.

I am not making any acusations against the hospital, but the bruising should have been recorded as it happened, in my opinion.

However, even if your mother was never bruised at home, strangers are handling her now, and perhaps in her confusion, she is resisting them more than she did you.

Take care, and let us know how your mum gets on.

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