Chicago Clogged Breathing Tubes Attorneys

Experienced Chicago Nursing Home Clogged Breathing Tubes Attorneys

Many nursing home residents rely on breathing tubes to survive.

When those tubes become clogged, serious brain injuries or death can transpire in mere minutes. That is precisely why Chicago nursing homes are charged with the responsibility of safeguarding residents relying on breathing tubes.

Sadly, clogged breathing tubes are much more common in Illinois than they ought to be. Most cases arise in the nursing home context, and even though they often seem like “accidents,” the nursing homes are frequently at fault.

Illinois Nursing Homes Have a Legal Duty to Prevent Clogged Breathing Tubes

Following intubation, many residents experience profound difficulty in communicating. Some may be unable to speak at all. This leaves them in an extremely vulnerable position, especially in the event that the breathing tube becomes clogged — often with mucus or other debris.

Nursing home staff and other caregivers have a duty to carefully monitor every resident after tracheotomy or intubation. Specifically, the nursing home should monitor for:

  • Respiratory or pulmonary problems
  • Choking
  • Discomfort
  • Signs of distress
  • Vital signs
  • Any changes in the resident’s health or demeanor
  • Any other signs of concern

Failure to identify these problems and react appropriately can be grounds for legal action against the caregiver and/or the facility.

Nursing home residents deserve the utmost respect and the very best care. These are our parents and grandparents, after all. We have a right to expect that the facilities we select will take good care of the people we love, and there is absolutely no excuse for their failure to do so.

As experienced Chicago nursing home injury attorneys, we are prepared to hold negligent nursing homes accountable to the terms of their contracts and the letter of the law. We will aggressively pursue justice in every case we accept. Our goal is to maximize your financial recovery and send a message to nursing homes: our loved ones matter, and we will stand up for them.

Why Do Some Seniors Require Breathing Tubes?

Nursing home residents require breathing tubes for various reasons. Some surgical procedures necessitate the installation of an endotracheal tube during recovery. The same is true for some particularly severe infections or conditions that threaten to close the windpipe (trachea). Others may depend on the tubes in order to achieve adequate respiration without accidentally choking.

Even routine conditions like bronchiolitis and pneumonia can lead to intubation. They are common in the treatment of certain cancers, brain conditions, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and ALS. Many other medical procedures and conditions can indicate tracheotomy or intubation with a breathing tube as well. In any of these instances, the procedures and/or the tubes can become real lifelines for the residents.

Conditions Caused by Clogged Breathing Tubes

Clogged breathing tubes in nursing homes can lead to a wide range of illnesses and injuries, including:

  • Brain damage
  • Spinal damage
  • Injured vertebrae
  • Pulmonary aspiration
  • Choking on debris
  • Hypertension
  • Stroke
  • Arrhythmia
  • Heart attack / cardiac arrest
  • Airway perforation
  • Damage to the nasal passages and/or vocal cord
  • Dental damage
  • Trauma affecting the lips, tongue, gums, or mouth
  • Early or sudden death

This is not an exhaustive list. We all depend on an unobstructed airway and adequate oxygen to survive. Any interruption in that process can cause catastrophic or even fatal damage. Whatever the nature of the injuries in your situation, the experienced Chicago nursing home injury attorneys at Malman Law can help.

Get in Touch with Our Experienced Chicago Nursing Home Injury Attorneys

If you or your relative has sustained injuries in assisted living facilities in Illinois, Malman Law can help. You can count on us to tirelessly pursue the largest amount of compensation available in your case. We will send a message to negligent facilities and take an aggressive stand for justice on your behalf.

Don’t worry if you don’t have money to pay us upfront for our services. We offer each of our clients a Zero Fee Guarantee, which means you don’t have to pay a thing unless and until we successfully settle or win your case.

Because we handle so many nursing home cases, our firm also employs a full-time Registered Nurse with more than 30 years of experience working in the various nursing homes of Chicagoland. Our nurse reviews each of these cases in the context of medical malpractice and the relevant standards of nursing care. We believe this gives us invaluable insight and offers a real benefit to our clients.

Most elderly nursing home residents are unable to stay healthy on their own.

That’s why they seek residence in an assisted living facility in the first place. The nursing homes have an extremely important duty, then, to help them stay well. When they breach that duty through carelessness, the victims and their families are entitled to justice, including financial compensation under Illinois law.

At Malman Law, we are dedicated to protecting the rights of nursing home residents in Illinois. We’ve worked with injured residents and their families for decades, and we know first hand how astoundingly negligent even the biggest and best nursing homes can be in their disregard for a resident’s wellbeing.

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Know Your Rights!


This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by President and Founder, Steven J. Malman who has more than 20 years of legal experience as a personal injury attorney.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are the federal rights of a nursing home resident?

Residents of facilities that participate in the Medicare program enjoy the following federal rights:

  • Freedom from verbal, sexual, physical, and mental abuse.
  • Freedom from physical or chemical restraints, except restraints imposed for medical reasons or to insure the safety of the patient or others. Restraints imposed for reasons of discipline or convenience are illegal and are considered abuse.
  • The right to be treated with dignity and respect.
  • The right to manage your own finances or to appoint someone else to do so.
  • The right to privacy as long as it doesn’t interfere with the health, safety, or rights of others.
  • The right to use one’s personal belongings as long as it doesn’t interfere with the health, safety, or rights of others.
  • The right to information about your medical condition and any treatments.
  • The right to refuse treatment (as long as you have the mental capacity to understand the nature and consequences of such a refusal).
  • The right to use your own doctor.
  • The right to set your own daily schedule.
  • The right to as much independence as your medical condition allows you.
  • The right to a safe and comfortable environment.

Most of these rights also apply under state law, even for nursing homes that do not participate in the Medicare program.

Can I sue the nursing home even if my loved one has no written contract with them?

Yes, you can, because human rights don’t need contractual support. If you were hit by a car, for example, you wouldn’t have to prove that you had a contract with the driver not to hit you in order to win a lawsuit against him or her – you could sue under general tort law principles, just as you can in cases of abuse and neglect in a nursing facility.

The Illinois Nursing Home Care Act defines the rights under state law that your loved one enjoys with or without a contractual arrangement with the nursing home. Federal regulations also apply if the institution participates in the Medicare program. Proving that the facility violated an applicable regulation will go a long way toward establishing their liability for compensatory damages. In cases of outrageous conduct, you might even be able to collect punitive damages against the nursing home. Of course, if there is a contract, a contract claim could be added to other claims arising from the abuse or neglect.

Where do I file a complaint against nursing home abuse or neglect?

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is the state agency responsible for enforcing the law in favor of the more than 100,000 nursing home residents residing in over 1,200 facilities in Illinois. The IDPH licenses these facilities, conducts inspections at least annually, and cooperates with the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services for eligibility to participate in federal payment reimbursement programs.

The IDPH maintains a Nursing Home Hotline (800-252-4343) for complaints. Upon receiving a complaint of abuse or neglect, the IDPH’s Bureau of Long Term Care may launch an investigation. Although it does not participate in lawsuits, it can sanction or even close down homes that violate the Illinois Nursing Home Care Act or federal regulations. The results of its investigation can be used as evidence in a civil lawsuit against a home or an employee.