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How To Treat Road Rash After a Motorcycle Accident

Colburn Law

Road rash is a common injury in motorcycle accidents, but it carries with it serious risks. These skin abrasions result from contact with the road surface during an accident; they can range from mild injuries, affecting only the outer layer of skin, to severe damage, where multiple layers of skin are removed and expose underlying tissues.

Medical treatment is an essential aspect of recovery. To avoid potentially dangerous complications, it is important to seek medical care as soon as possible following the accident, even if your injury seems superficial.

Potential Complications Associated with Road Rash

Road rash complications can be both painful and serious. The wound can act as a gateway for bacteria, leading to dangerous and potentially life-threatening infections. These may include methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and tetanus.

Another serious complication is sepsis, an infection that spreads to the bloodstream, leading to a fatal condition known as septic shock. You could also experience scarring due to road rash. Depending on the wound’s depth and severity, scarring can be substantial, resembling those from serious burns.

Seek Professional Medical Attention After An Accident

Seek Professional Medical Attention After an Accident

Road rash might seem less severe compared to broken bones or internal injuries. However, it is still important to seek medical care as soon as possible to prevent potential complications. When you go to the hospital, your medical team may focus on any of the following treatment options, depending on the severity and extent of the road rash:

  • Assessment and Cleaning: Your doctor will first assess the severity of the road rash, identifying the degree to which layers of skin have been affected. Following assessment, they will thoroughly clean the wound to remove any debris, dirt, or contaminants.
  • Pain Management, Antibiotics, and Vaccines: After initial treatment, your medical team may prescribe medication to help manage pain and antibiotics to prevent infections. If your tetanus vaccine is not up to date, a booster may be administered as a precautionary measure.
  • Dressing and Bandaging: The team will apply a sterile dressing to the cleaned and treated wound. Proper dressing helps protect the road rash from further contamination and aids in keeping the area moist, which is vital for healing.
  • Skin Grafting: For severe cases of road rash, skin grafting may be necessary. This surgical procedure involves taking skin from another part of the body and transplanting it to the injured area to promote healing and reduce scarring.

How to Treat Road Rash Injuries at Home

Once professional medical attention has been sought for road rash, many patients will continue their recovery at home. Proper home care is crucial for healing and preventing infections. You will need to change your bandages regularly, making sure to wash the wound with warm water and soap, apply an antibiotic ointment, and dress the wound in clean bandages.

You will also need to carefully monitor your wound for signs of infection. If you notice any signs of infection, such as increased pain, swelling, warmth, pus or fluid drainage, foul smell, and flu-like symptoms, seek medical care as soon as possible.

Recovering Compensation for Road Rash Injuries in Washington

While road rash may seem like a minor injury, the complications can be severe, leading to medical expenses, severe pain, and many other damages.

If someone else is responsible for your motorcycle accident, you have the right to pursue legal action and recover compensation for the losses that you have suffered. To learn more about your legal options, contact a Seattle motorcycle accident attorney as soon as possible.