People involved in a car accident may suffer serious injuries. Many accident victims suffer burns which can lead to scarring even with the best treatment. If you suffered burns in an accident, make sure you account for burn scarring in the valuation of your claim.
Some questions that you may want to consider before filing your Georgia personal injury claim include:
- Are your burn scars on your face, head or neck, the appearance of which may cause you significant emotional trauma?
- Are your burn scars affecting you psychologically?
- Are your burn scars having an impact on your social life and your ability to enjoy your life as you did before the accident?
- Do your burn scars necessitate long-term medical care or some form of emotional counseling?
- Are your burn scars preventing you from returning to gainful employment?
Types of Burn Scars
Victims of severe burns often suffer from some form of scarring. There are three major types of burn scars that can occur after an accident.
They form when the body continues to produce scar tissue beyond that which is needed to cover the wound. The result is a hard, raised growth or bump.
They are benign tumors that cause no health concerns, though they may cause symptoms such as:
- Skin pigmentation
- Irritation and discomfort
Initial treatment for keloid scarring may include monthly cortisone injections. Cryosurgery, excision and laser treatment are also possible options. After treatment, keloids should become less noticeable over the course of a few months, but they can be difficult to treat and may reoccur.
Hypertrophic scars and keloids are similar. Both are raised scars that result from excess scar tissue, but hypertrophic scars are smaller and less pronounced. They may even fade over time.
Hypertrophic scarring may also cause itchiness and irritation, similar to keloid scars. Cortisone shots and cryosurgery are both options for hypertrophic scar treatment.
A contracture occurs when inelastic tissue forms over a burn injury, tightening the skin. They often affect the joints, reducing range of motion. Patients may also experience pain and other symptoms related to scarring. Burn scar victims will often do exercises and stretches to treat contractures, and may also use braces and splints.
How do burn scars affect victims?
Accident victims with burn scars experience physical, emotional and financial damages. Things will likely never be the same as they were before the accident.
Physical and Emotional Effects
Physically, burn scars can be painful and require long-term medical treatment.
Scarring that is readily visible (especially scarring on the face and neck), can have emotional effects like social anxiety. Victims may be unhappy with their appearance and have a hard time accepting it after an accident. This can make it difficult to maintain relationships with spouses, family and friends. Scars can also negatively impact a victim’s social life and prevent them from enjoying life like they used to.
Victims may also find that their scars negatively impact their earning capacity in the workplace. Many patients also find that returning to work after their accident is a true struggle. In addition to the physical pain, they may feel that their coworkers and supervisors treat them differently because of how they look. They may also have to miss days at the office for therapy and treatment, which can cause them to fall behind in their work.
Further, burn victims often find themselves drowning in medical bills. In addition to treatment that is medically required, patients may also seek cosmetic surgery to help restore their appearance. With lost wages and possible loss of earning capacity, it can be hard for accident victims to afford these expenses. Making ends meet after such a tragedy can be difficult.
Recover Compensation for These Damages
Burn victims deserve compensation for the pain and suffering and other damages they have endured. If you suffered severe burns in a car accident, filing suit against those responsible for your injuries and scarring is one of the first steps on the road to recovery.
But as you seek financial recovery, make sure you fully value your damages. Consider the short- and long-term effects of your injuries, including the physical, emotional, and financial damages listed above.
Attorney Jason Schultz is available to help you accurately value the damages you suffered and seek full recovery. Please contact us today at 404-474-0804 to set up a consultation with an Atlanta car accident attorney.