North Carolina Second-Degree Burn Injury Lawyers
Car accidents, house fires, propane explosions, and other types of accidents can cause second-degree burns. Second-degree burns are particularly dangerous because they can cause serious infections, and they often cause significant chronic pain and have the potential to leave gruesome and extensive scarring. Burn victims are vulnerable to bacterial skin infections that can spread to their internal organs and cause permanent disabilities, and even death. If you have suffered a second-degree burn injury caused by another person’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Contact the skilled personal injury lawyers at Arnold & Smith, PLLC today to schedule your initial consultation.What is a Second-Degree Burn?
A second-degree burn injury happens when both layers of skin become damaged. The skin will often become bright red, sore, and may become blistered. Some blisters can open, making the burn look wet. The more severe the burn, the more it will blister, and the longer the burn will take to heal. Severe burn cases require skin grafting, which is an intense procedure requiring a lengthy recovery and a very specialized procedure. Second-degree burn injuries themselves are dangerous, especially given the extreme risk of infection. Second degree burns are extremely painful. However, it is the complications that can arise from second-degree burns that cause extremely serious medical issues, or even death in some cases.Second-Degree Burns are Far Too Common
According to the American Burn Association, over 60% of admissions to U.S. hospitals for acute injuries are caused by burn injuries. Fire and flames caused the majority of admissions for burn injuries, followed by scalding, contact burns, electrical burns, and chemical burns. Serious burn injuries require treatment in one of the 128 burn centers across the country. Recovering from a burn injury is often expensive and time-consuming, often requiring taking time off work.Serious Injuries Caused by Second-Degree Burns
Many second-degree burns heal relatively quickly, within two weeks of the date of the injury, however some second-degree burns do not heal easily. Deep burns can damage the top two layers of skin, and often take at least a month to heal. When these burns cause infections, the victim is even more at risk for permanent issues. Some may brush second-degree burns off as being superficial. Yet, second-degree burns are not merely superficial to burn victims. Second-degree burns can cause severe, painful scarring, which can require treatment lasting for at least a year.
Sometimes, bacterial infections can cause second-degree burns to become more severe injuries. Wound infections can cause sepsis shock, which is incredibly dangerous because it results in a rapid drop in blood pressure and can even cause death.Compartment Syndrome Caused Second-Degree Burns
Second-degree burns can also cause compartment syndrome. Compartment syndrome causes the tissue below the injury to swell. As a result, the tourniquet effect can happen, stopping blood flow. The medical treatment for compartment syndrome is extremely painful and serious. Medical professionals will treat compartment syndrome with an escharotomy, which is an incision in the dead hard tissue that covers the wound.Fluid Loss Caused by Second-Degree Burns
Another serious problem caused by serious burn injuries is fluid loss. Under-resuscitation and over-resuscitation of fluid can both result in serious consequences. Under-resuscitation can cause multiple system organ failures and kidney failure. Over-resuscitation can also cause edema, hypoxia, and airway obstruction. Other serious complications of second-degree burns include the following conditions:
- Bacterial pneumonia
- Pulmonary edema
- Post-traumatic pulmonary insufficiency
- Inhalation injury
- Aspiration in patients who are unconscious
In a burn injury case, the victim of second-degree burns may be entitled to compensation for the costs of medical care, lost income from time out of work and pain and suffering. In many cases, successful burn-injury plaintiffs may be entitled to receive compensation for all of the following:
- Loss of enjoyment in life
- Compensation for permanent disfigurement or scarring
- Compensation for mental anguish
- Compensation for emotional suffering
- Compensation for physical pain
- Lost wages and loss of capacity to earn wages
- All past and future medical expenses related to the burn injury
Hiring a skilled burn injury lawyer is one of the most important parts of succeeding in a burn injury lawsuit. At Arnold & Smith, PLLC our lawyers have the experience you need to successfully represent your interests in a North Carolina personal injury lawsuit. Contact our law firm today to schedule your initial consultation. Now taking cases throughout North Carolina with offices in Uptown Charlotte, Mooresville and Monroe.