Burns can significantly affect your capabilities and appearance. That is why it is important to work with an experienced Ohio burn injury lawyer who understands the myriad consequences of burn injuries from accidents.
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Despite the common knowledge that circulates regarding burns having only three degrees, there are actually six severities of burns that have different characteristics and require various treatments. You probably heard about the first three degrees of burns most because these are non-lethal. While you may be able to survive these lower degrees of burns, moving forward with life can be difficult.
The fourth through six degrees of burns are typically fatal and less well known to the public. This is likely because the distinction regarding the burns seems unimportant when you have lost a loved one. However, if your loved was killed in an accident caused by another person’s negligence, the severity of the burns may be relevant to your case and potential compensation.
The Six Degrees of Burns
- First degree burns are defined as superficial. There may be some pain and redness in the area, which could also swell and become sensitive to the touch. You commonly experience first degree burns from the sun or coming into contact with very hot water. These rarely require medical assistance and can be cared for at home.
- Second-degree burns move deeper into the skin and cause blisters on the skin. There is also redness and swelling in the affected area. These hurt a great deal more than first degree burns and require professional medical treatment to avoid infection. You commonly get second-degree burns through coming into contact with fire or boiling liquids.
- Third-degree burns damage all three layers of your skin. The area will not look red or blistered like with first or second-degree burns. Instead, the area can appear charred or white. These are extremely painful and require prompt medical attention to avoid further damage or death. You often suffer third-degree burns because of coming into contact with fire, electricity, or strong chemicals.
- Fourth-degree burns affect all of the layers of the skin and damage the tissue or organs underneath, such as the muscles and tendons. These can be extremely painful but the area will be left with no sensation because the nerves are destroyed. The fatality rate for fourth-degree burns is high, and if you survive, you will require extensive medical treatments such as skin grafts. Fourth-degree burns are often caused by significant fires or electrical shock.
- Fifth-degree burns damage all of the soft tissue and organs in the exposed area and can affect the bone. The affected area will look charred. You will not have feeling or function in the affected area due to the extensive damage. Most fifth degree burns are fatal, and if you survive, treatment requires amputation of the affected area.
- Sixth-degree burns are not survivable. This degree of burn destroys all levels of the body and leads to a charred appearance.
Treating Burn Injuries
When you suffer second through fourth-degree burns, swift and comprehensive medical treatment is necessary. Physicians will immediately give you fluids to fight dehydration, antibiotics to ward off infection, and pain medication. Once you are in stable condition, physicians must remove the damaged and dead skin since its presence increases the risk of infection and prevents your body from healing. If cleaning the area and the use of skin grafts are not possible, physicians may amputation digits or limbs. Amputation is used when an area of your body is so damaged, there is no way for you to recover sensation and function there.
Not only is the initial injury painful, but the treatments and recovery from burns, skin graft procedures, and amputations can be excruciating. If you suffered this type of injury from an accident, you and your attorney will need to calculate a great deal of compensation for your pain and suffering.
Consequences of Burn Injuries
Severe burns often lead to amputations of your fingers, hands or toes and feet. This type of disability can make it difficult to return to work, even after the burns and treatments have healed. Burns and their necessary treatments can also significant decrease your mobility and flexibility, making it difficult to be active or care for yourself independently. Even the loss of multiple toes can make it difficult for you to walk for some time or require you to use a cane. Larger amputations of your arms or legs lead to an even greater disability that may require the use of a wheelchair or prosthetics.
Burns greatly affect how you look. Once you have suffered severe burns, you are unable to retain your previous appearance. If the burn scars are on your upper body, neck, and face, then there is no way to avoid other people’s reactions and comments. This type of disfigurement can have numerous physical and psychological consequences, including isolating you from society, depression, and anxiety.
Contact Our Ohio Burn Injury Lawyers for Help
If you suffered a serious burn because of an accident caused by someone else, call Kisling, Nestico & Redick right away. As one of the largest personal injury firms in the state, our legal team has extensive experience working with individuals who need to recover compensation for burn injuries. Whether through an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit, we will strive to obtain the maximum amount of compensation possible for your injuries.
Call us today at 1-800-HURT-NOW to schedule an initial, no risk consultation.