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An old woman laying in bed suffering from deyhydration and malnutrition.


Dehydration and malnutrition are prevalent in nursing home and assisted living facility residents. Dehydration and malnutrition occur when residents are not provided enough to eat and/or drink. This is typically caused by a facility’s:

  • failure to assist residents, as needed, during mealtimes, causing them to eat or drink substantially less than they would if they were able to self-feed;

  • failure to properly assess a resident’s care needs, including nutritional intake needs and feeding assistance needs,

  • failure to maintain adequate staffing to assist residents during mealtime or to recognize signs and symptoms of dehydration and malnutrition or decreased intake,

  • failure to train staff to recognize the signs and symptoms of dehydration and malnutrition,

  • failure to follow physician’s orders regarding a resident’s dietary needs,

  • failure to notify a resident’s physician when there is a change in the resident’s intake, weight, or any other adverse outcome associated with dehydration and/or malnutrition,

  • failure to provide well-balanced, palatable meals, and/or

  • failure to have a sufficient budget to provide for the dietary needs of facility residents.


Malnutrition and/or dehydration can lead to the following general adverse resident outcomes:


  • infections due to a weakened immune system (e.g., pneumonia, UTIs, etc.)

  • confusion

  • muscle weakness/frailty

  • increased risk for falls

  • immobility

  • increased risk for pressure ulcers

  • improper wound healing

  • unhealthy weight loss

  • osteoporosis

  • vitamin deficiencies

  • stroke

  • death


The bottom line is that through proper care and treatment, dehydration and malnutrition should never happen. If you believe your loved one suffered from dehydration and/or malnutrition at the hands of a nursing home or assisted living facility, contact the experienced attorneys at FIDJ, before it’s too late.

*The information contained herein is not, and must not be construed as medical advice.

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We Hold Nursing Homes, Assisted Living Facilities, Group Homes, and Adult Day Care Centers Accountable.

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