Burns can be devastating and may cause painful injuries that can leave victims permanently scarred or disfigured. Burn injuries are often more painful and distressing than other injuries because the pain is often experienced all of the body. Even where the burn occurs on a small portion of the body, the victim may experience pain all over the body and damage to their lungs. Severe burn injuries may cause muscle and bone damage, skin damage, neurological damage, infection, intense pain, diminished or lost sense of touch and the inability to perspire. Those who have suffered a severe burn injury may require costly medical treatment and multiple skin-graft surgeries.
In addition to the physical pain burn victims often face, they may also face severe emotional distress, expensive medical bills, loss of earnings and the inability to return to work.
Consult with our Los Angeles Burn Injury Attorney
If you or a family member has suffered a burn injury, it is important that you be aware of your legal rights. If you were burned as the result of someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you may be entitled to compensation for past and future medical bills, past and future loss of earnings, and compensation for physical, mental and emotional pain. Our Los Angeles Burn injury lawyer understand the pain and distress that burn victims may face and we are committed to protecting victim’s rights. Our attorneys are available to provide a free, in-person consultation to discuss the legal rights of victims and their families.
Burn Injury Information
According to the American Burn Association, nearly ½ million Americans receive treatment for burn injuries each year. The American Burn Association also reports that there an estimated 3500 fatalities and 45,000 hospitalizations result from burn injuries each year. (American Burn Association National Burn Repository 2011 Report.)
According to the American Burn Association, common causes of burn injuries includes
- Contact with fire or flame.
- Scalding injuries from steam, hot bath water or other hot liquids
- Thermal burns from hot objects like irons or ovens
- Electrical burns –caused by accidental contact with electricity
- Chemical burns, sunburns, fireworks and inhalation
Types of Burns
Our skin (epidermal tissue) is made up of three layers. The outermost layer is the epidermis, the second layer is the dermis and the deepest layer is the hypodermis. Burns are often described according to the depth of injury to the dermis and are generally classified into first, second, third, and fourth degrees. In addition to the depth of a burn, the severity of a burn can be affected by factors such as the age of victim, the total body surface area affected by the burn, location of the burn and coexisting injuries or illnesses. The depth of a burn can be difficult to determine, especially for more serious burns. Thus, it is important that burn injuries be evaluated by a health care professional to ensure that the burn is properly treated to avoid possible complications.
- First-degree burns are burns to the top layer of skin, the epidermis. They may cause redness and pain and heal within a week. These burns generally do not affect hair follicles or sweat glands and thus are not usually life-threatening. However, a first-degree burn can be potentially dangerous if the burn covers a large area of skin or becomes infected.
- Second-Degree Burns (Partial Thickness Burns) are burns that involve the top layer of skin and a portion of the second layer of skin. Partial thickness burns are broken down into two types of burns: superficial partial-thickness burns and deep partial-thickness burns.
– Superficial partial-thickness burns cause blistering and are painful. These type of burns generally heal within three weeks with minimal scarring.
– Deep partial-thickness burns are dry and may appear ivory or pearly white. They take longer to heal and usually cause scarring. Skin grafts are usually recommended for these types of burns.
- Third-Degree Burns (Full thickness burns) are a type of burn that destroys the first and second layers of the skin. The skin may be dry and may appear stiff, waxy white, leathery or tan. Third-degree burns can destroy nerves, causing numbness or loss of the sense of touch.
This type of burn may be treated by a physician with early removal of the dead the skin, skin grafting or compression therapy to remove scarring. This type of burn is very dangerous and can cause a great deal of physical and mental harm.
- Fourth Degree Burn is a burn that extends deeply into the subcutaneous tissue; it may involve muscle, fascia, or bone.
Our Los Angeles Burn injury attorney have experience working with burn victims and understand that burn injuries can be some of the most painful injuries. Serious burn injuries can cause serious side effects, including nerve damage loss of skin elasticity, loss of the sense of touch and risk of infection, severe pain and permanent scarring. Serious burn injuries can also cause the loss of ability to perspire, which will hamper the body’s ability to balance fluids and regulate temperature. One way the body acts to stay cool is to perspire. Perspiring brings the fluid to the skin surface, so the fluid can evaporate and we then feel cooler. Perspiration also helps the body eliminate waste. A seriously burned victim’s skin may not perspire normally as the quality and ability of the skin tissue has been compromised. This loss of ability to perspire means that the body’s own way of cooling itself can no longer function.
The most severe burns are forth degree burns and these can cause damage lower down than the skin affecting the muscles, bones and tendons.
Preventing Burn Injuries
Children will often be the victims of burn related injuries. To prevent this happening it is important to supervise children if you think they are in a potentially dangerous situation. The bathroom and kitchen are two places where burns often occur. The kitchen has the stove, oven and kettle whilst in the bathroom children have been known to be injured by hair curlers. Children should never be allowed to play with fireworks as these can cause severe burn injuries.
Smoke alarms can be extremely effective in preventing injury. You may be extremely careful in the day time to avoid accidents but you will not be able to be vigilant when you are asleep. A smoke alarm can act as a form of backup. Click here to go to our auto accident attorney Los Angeles page.
Our Los Angeles personal injury attorney law firm has years handling burn injury cases. We understand the devastation that burn injuries can cause and we are committed to helping victims obtain financial compensation for our clients who have been physically or psychologically injured due to the negligence or wrongdoing of another party. Our Los Angeles Burn Injury attorneys also represent families in wrongful death cases, to seek compensation for those who have suffered the death of a loved one due to the negligence of others. If the burn injury was related to a car accident, please click here to go to our auto accident attorney in Los Angeles page.