Brasure Law Firm, PLLC

By: Chris Brasure

Skin Grafting and Your Burn Injury Claim

Personal Injury

First, you must understand that the severity of your burn will determine how it is treated and how your experienced burn injury law team may handle your burn injury case.

Usually, first-degree burns, which are the most minor, may heal within 1-3 weeks unless complications, such as infection, etc., occur.

Second-degree burns could take up to thirty days or so to heal but usually only affects the dermis (or outer layer of your skin).

Third-degree burns, however, could take many months to heal and are so deep that they may damage bones, muscles, and even organs. These burns almost always require skin grafting to treat appropriately and could involve months (or even years) of surgery to repair.

Fourth-degree burns can be life-threatening and usually result in permanent damage, and they will probably change your life forever.

So, if you receive 3rd or 4th-degree burns, the medical aspects of your case become far more costly, and the compensation needed for treatment, recovery, etc., may add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars or even more.

If your 3rd or 4th-degree burn was due to the negligence of another party or institution, your experienced Edinburg burn injury law team will use all the evidence at hand to prove two main points, they are:

  • The person, company, or institution you are suing is liable for your injuries and should be forced to pay whatever is needed to help you get treatment, recover, and thrive.
  • The total cost of your injuries and losses from your accident, and costs for necessary skin grafts, surgery, recovery, lost wages, and possibly care for the rest of your life.

Proving liability is the same as in any personal injury case. Accordingly, whoever you sue is not likely to admit fault, and your lawyer will demonstrate that fact.

As a burn injury victim, the real challenge for you is that most juries can’t fully comprehend the enormous agony, embarrassment, or expense that a severe burn injury causes you and your family. However, your thorough and experienced Edinburg burn injury lawyer will help the jury to comprehend what you are going through, and they usually rely on more than words to prove this critical point.

How Will My Lawyer Prove the Extent and Value Of My Burn Injuries?

It must be emphasized that finding a way that impacts the jury with the severity of your health situation after a 3rd or 4th-degree burn or skin grafting procedure is one of the essential parts of winning your burn injury case. It also will help the jury decide what compensation is fully required to make your life “whole” again.

Your competent and aggressive Edinburg burn injury lawyer will use all or some of the following to get you what you deserve:

  • Demonstrative Aids
    • Photographs that show your burn injuries.
    • Photos that demonstrate your recovery process.
    • Snapshots that document permanent scarring that occurred.
    • Video of doctors performing the various skin grafting, procedures you must now go through, and more.
  • Expert Medical Testimony
    • Your lawyer will use expert medical testimony to demonstrate your doctor’s scope of expertise so that the jury comprehends the nature and extent of skin grafts and other treatments you received.
  • Eyewitness Testimony
    • Witnesses from your actual burn accident.
    • Relatives providing 1st hand testimony of your recovery.
  • Medical Records and Bills
    • Many jurors aren’t aware of what a burn injury feels like, but when they see enormous medical bills that illustrate the treatment needed, they begin to “see the light.”

What Are the Main Causes of Burn Injuries?

A severe 3rd or 4th-degree burn injury often damages deep layers of your skin. Some damage deeper tissue, such as fat, muscle, ligaments, or bone.

Burn injuries happen in myriad ways, and “flame” is not always involved.

Some common examples of burn injuries are:

  • Flame – Immediate contact with fire or flame.
  • Flash burns – That result from the heat of an explosion.
  • Scalding burn – When your skin is hit by scalding liquids or steam.
  • Grease – Grease burns when skin contacts hot grease.
  • Contact burns – Prolonged contact with some hot object or surface.
  • Electrical burns – Electricity passes through your body, severely heats your skin and underlying tissue, etc.
  • Chemical burns – Skin contact with harsh, usually toxic chemicals such as acid or alkalis solutions.

All these types of burns, some more than others, can be severe and may result in deep tissue burns and even death. Skin grafting, which may have to be done in sections and take months to complete, can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, bankrupting your family and destroying your future health.

If you’ve had any of these types of burns, consulting with an Edinburg burn injury lawyer is mandatory to preserve your health and your family’s finances.

What Is a Skin Graft and Are There Different Types?

A skin graft will usually be done if your burn is severe enough and your skin is too damaged to heal.

Skin grafts take thin layers of skin from an unburned area of your body and surgically place it on the burned area. The new skin is taken from the donor site, such as your thigh or back but may be removed from anywhere on your body other than your face. The donor site then usually takes about two weeks to heal.

Your surgeon considers many factors before deciding what type of skin graft to use on your specific burn. They consider the condition, thickness, and size of your wound and the location of your injury on your body.

Some types of skin grafts are:

  • Autografts – These are permanent skin grafts that replace burned skin. With this graft, surgeons remove the skin from one place on the body and place it on the burned area of the body. There are a few different types of autografts.
  • Xenografts – These are temporary grafts to cover the wound. Here donor skin usually is taken from a  pig.
  • Meshed grafts – These are grafts where your skin is perforated with small slits or holes. Surgeons can then expand the mesh to cover a large, burned area of your body.

These are only a few examples, but there are many more. All are detailed, costly, and lengthy procedures. Your local burn injury lawyer’s advice and guidance in getting the funds you need to recover and thrive in any of these medical procedures will be invaluable.

I’ve Suffered a Burn Injury and Need Skin Grafting; How Should I Proceed?

So, it may appear that your “burn injury” case is easy to win in a lawsuit; but that is not the case.

Burn injury cases must be handled in specific ways and presented professionally and competently to a jury.

If a person or company has caused you to be severely burned, yes, you likely have a claim against them. However, the “key” is to work with a professional, aggressive, and winning Edinburg burn injury lawyer and convince the jury of your injury’s seriousness!

By Brasure Law Firm, PLLC