If you or a loved one has suffered burn injury, there are several things you need to know about pursuing a potential burn injury claim. However, in addition to understanding your legal rights, you need to understand the severity of the burn injury and ensure that the proper course of medical treatment is pursued.
Your skin is the largest organ of your body. In addition to being the most visible part of our body, your skin provides vital protection. It helps you stay warm when it's cold, and cool when it's hot. Your skin helps keep dangerous germs out of your body and protects you from infection. It protects your nervous system and permits your sense of touch.
Damage to your skin from burns can cause lifelong physical complications and can result in costly, expensive medical treatment and rehabilitation. The cost and length of time it will take to recover depends on the type and severity of a burn. When you suffer a burn injury, your health care provider is not going to treat your wound based on its type and severity.
The following is a list of the four types of burns:
First Degree Burns
First degree burns are the least serious type of burn. They generally heal within 10 to 20 days, so long as there is not a skin infection. First degree burns affect the epidermis, which is the outermost layer of the skin. First degree burns create pain and redness. Usually, you can treat a first degree burn like any minor burn, and you may not need to seek medical attention. However, if the burn is large or covers a portion of your face, hands, feet, buttocks, groin, or a major joint, you should seek emergency medical treatment.
Second Degree Burns
Second degree burns may take a month or longer to heal because it is a burn that goes deeper, affecting both the epidermis and the dermis, a lower layer of skin. These burns cause pain, redness, swelling and blistering. As with the first-degree burn, if a second degree burn is small, you can probably treat it without professional medical assistance. However, if your wound covers any of the areas of your body described under the first-degree burn, you should seek treatment at the emergency room.
Third Degree Burns
Third degree burns are also known as full-thickness burns because these burns go through the epidermis and dermis and affect deeper body tissues. They result in white or blackened charred skin that can cause numbness. Third degree burns may also require skin grafts and can take several months to heal. The tissues that may be affected include your bones, muscles, tendons and nerve endings.
You should go to the emergency room as soon as possible after a third degree burn to evaluate the damage and receive urgent medical treatment. Failure to properly treat a third-degree burns can lead to loss of a limb or death.
Fourth Degree Burns
Fourth degree burns are the most serious type of burns. These burns go through the skin and internal tissue and can cause permanent, lifelong damage to your muscles and bones. Fourth degree burns often never heal. As with third degree burns, you or your loved one will obviously need emergency medical treatment to diagnose and properly treat a fourth degree burn. the sooner proper medical treatment is obtained the more proactive medical professionals can be in limiting and addressing the damage.
If you are not sure what type of burn you have, you should seek a medical professional's opinion. It is always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to burn injuries.
Contact Our Kansas City Burn Injury Attorney Today
If your burn injury was the result of another person's negligence or fault, please contact our Kansas City burn injury lawyer at the Law Office of Kevin J. McManus. You can either call 816-203-0143 or fill out the contact form below to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.