Motorcycle road rash is not always a superficial injury for a rider. Some motorcycle accidents can cause serious injuries to the skin that go far deeper than the first few layers of skin. These types of injuries are susceptible to infection and are of particular concern when they are on prominent areas like the face and hands.
Treatment may be ongoing and pain and emotional harm may be significant with road rash. Motorcycle accident victims will want to start looking at their legal options for compensation as soon as practicable. An accident injury attorney would be a good place to start. For a free consult with a motorcycle accident attorney in Pennsylvania that handles all types of motorcycle accident cases, call Cordisco & Saile at 215-642-2335.
What is road rash?
In a motorcycle accident, a rider often collides with the ground. The bike may pin him and drag him along the road or the impact may throw him from the bike and he may slide for some distance on the pavement. When skin slides on pavement, rock, grit, and other road surfaces, it can abrade and tear the skin, causing road rash or road burn. Protective gear can help reduce the risks and severity of the injury, though some riders suffer abrasions even when wearing gear.
Similar to heat burns, the medical community categorizes road rash injuries by degree according to their severity.
- First-degree – The least severe type of road rash, first-degree burns damage just the outer layer of skin. Redness, swelling, tenderness, scrapes, and slight bleeding are usually the extent of the damage, and they generally do not lead to long-term complications. Standard wound care is necessary to clean the cuts and prevent infection.
- Second-degree – The next level of road rashes damage two layers of skin. Second-degree road rash is more painful than the first and symptoms include radiating heat, swelling bleeding, and sometimes exposed tendons, nerves, or muscles. With this type of damage, scarring is a concern.
- Third-degree – Riders will usually face intense pain and scarring with a third-degree road rash injury. It occurs when the skin is actually flayed off, resulting in deep wounds. It affects all layers of the skin, and could even cause damage to tissue and muscle underneath the skin. There might be nerve damage, as well. Scarring and disfigurement are common when the rash is this severe.
How can I treat road rash?
Second- and third-degree burns necessitate immediate treatment. A doctor should also treat extensive first-degree burns. In fact, accident victims should always seek medical attention regardless of whether they believe their injuries are minor or severe. Burn treatment usually requires not only a good cleansing but also debriding. This is the process of removing dead tissue or skin.
Burns may also require skin grafting, which is a surgical procedure where doctors cover the burned area with healthy skin. Doctors may take skin from another part of the person’s body or may use donated skin grafts. Doctors perform this course of action to eventually improve the aesthetics and function of the injured area, though it is not without certain risks.
Patients may also notice permanent discoloration or uneven texture between the skin graft and the surrounding skin. The healing process can be lengthy, and even when fully recovered, there may still be significant scarring which starts to show up after surgical wounds heal. Patients with further questions and concerns should speak with their doctor about what to expect after a skin graft procedure.
Pain is one of the most grueling parts of suffering a burn injury. The injured person may receive medication to manage it, sometimes through an IV. Cosmetic/plastic surgery may also be necessary when there is significant damage. Although it can help, the individual may still have disfiguring injuries that greatly affect him psychologically.
What are some effects a serious road rash injury can have on my life?
Serious road rash injuries can have detrimental, long-term repercussions. First, the physical complications are quite notable, including infections, bleeding, and loss of sensation in the affected area. Further, the injuries may be such that it affects your career or ability to work, which naturally, will greatly hinder your livelihood.
Moreover, the emotional toll a person experiences as a result of scarring and disfigurement can rock a victim down to her core. Social anxiety, self-image issues, and a reduced quality of life are all residual consequences of disfiguring road rash injuries. Excellent treatment, rehabilitation, and counseling can help, but this will require substantial funds.
What compensation can I receive after my motorcycle accident?
There are several types of damages you can collect after a motorcycle accident that can afford you the treatment and recompense you need. The amount and types of damages you qualify for depend upon many factors, such as the extent of your injuries, the cause of your accident, and the type of insurance policy you carry.
If your injury causes disfigurement and another party caused your wreck, you can recover a wide range of damages, including those for the following.
• Current and future medical bills
• Reconstructive surgeries
• Treatment for initial injuries and for subsequent infections
• Lost current and future wages
• Scarring and disfigurement
• Pain and suffering
• Emotional damages
• Damage to your relationships and self-esteem
• Reduced quality of life
It is important not to settle your motorcycle accident claim without knowing exactly how bad your injuries are what your future may hold. Once you agree to a settlement, laws bar you from receiving more funds later if your condition worsens or you need additional surgeries. It is a good idea to run your case or any settlement offers by a local injury attorney to ensure you get the full amount that you are entitled to.
For a free case evaluation, call Cordisco & Saile LLC in Pennsylvania. We can help you take the best course of action and fight for maximum financial recovery. Contact us at 215-642-2335 today.