Burn injuries are not only painful, but they have the potential to be extremely damaging. Depending on the burn, a victim could come away with extensive skin damage, internal injuries, or even amputation. Medical treatment can be costly and extensive. Rehab, physical therapy, and counseling may be necessary for recovery. If you have been injured or burned, a personal injury attorney may be able to help you recover damages.
Types and Causes of Burn Injuries
Burn injuries are characterized by these four types:
1. First-degree burns affect the outermost layer of the skin, generally causing redness, pain, and discomfort. A first-degree burn can be treated with over-the-counter remedies such as bandages, antiseptic ointments, and topical analgesics.
2. Second-degree burns burns are more serious; they extend into the underlying skin layer and may cause:
- Stiffening or hardening of tendons, muscles, and other tissue
- Severe discomfort
A second-degree burn injury may take three to eight weeks to heal.
3. Third-degree burns burns extend through the entire dermis, or all layers of the skin, and into the fatty layer underneath, potentially destroying nerves and leaving scars. These burns are extremely painful and result in waxy, white, leathery skin. Third-degree burns will require immediate medical attention and pain management, such as narcotic pain medication.
4. Fourth-degree burns penetrate past the skin and fat, and into muscle and bone. Fourth-degree burns leave permanent damage to the the nerves, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These kinds of burns often require amputation.
Inhaling too much carbon dioxide or other potentially dangerous gasses can cause damage to the respiratory system. Heavy smoke inhalation can block your airways and damage your lungs or suffocate you, even if you aren’t exposed to burns directly. Many lives are lost each year to asphyxiation in house fires.
This is the most common type of burn injury. Thermal burns are caused by direct contact with an open heat source, such as fire, steam, or a boiling liquid. Sunburns are also a type of thermal burn.
Electrical burns can happen if a victim interferes with an electric current by gripping an exposed wire, swimming in electrified water, or mishandling machinery. Electrical burns can cause superficial tissue damage.
There are industries and jobs that require you to work around dangerous chemicals. When a synthetic, corrosive substance comes into contact with soft tissue, such as skin, eyes, and internal organs, this can result in chemical burns. Certain acids, bases, oxidizers, solvents, thinning agents, and alkylating agents can all have damaging effects on the human body.
Fight for Your Rights. Contact a Burn Injury Lawyer at WKW
If you have been a victim of a burn accident at home or in the workplace, you may be eligible for compensation. Considering reaching out to a personal injury lawyer to fight on your side after your burn injury. WKW has a team of experienced burn injury lawyers who are dedicated to seeking justice for every client. Call our Indianapolis office at 317.920.6400 or contact us online for a free case evaluation.