Burn injuries can range from mild to extremely serious, and are some of the most frightening injuries that can occur. Many burn injuries occur every year here in the Dallas-Fort Worth area —and the causes of the burn vary, from accidents to defective products. The average person can’t look at a burn injury and determine the severity of the injury, so burn injuries of all levels appear to be extremely serious and frightening. Unfortunately, in many cases, burn injuries may cause long-term issues that must be dealt with for the rest of their lives.
Burn Depth By Degree.
Everyone has heard of the different types of burn categorization: first-degree, second-degree, third-degree, and fourth-degree burns. However, do you know the severity of these burns, and why the categorization of each matters?
- First-Degree Burns
First-degree burns typically involve minor pain and redness at the site of the injury. First-degree burns are typically minor injuries that heal on their own, and include things like sunburn or other mild burns. These types of burns are the simplest, occurring on the skin (termed “epidermis”), and usually causes the layer under the epidermis (termed “dermis”) to become swollen.
First-degree burns don’t require medical attention; you may simply want to spread an over-the-counter burn-cream on the exposed area for self-treatment.
- Second-Degree Burns
Second-degree burns involve more serious injuries. This kind of burn causes damage beyond the epidermis. Second-degree burns involve blistering and may be extremely painful, depending on the nerve clusters that are affected. Second-degree burns may or may not require medical treatment, depending on severity.
- Third-Degree Burns
Also referred to as “full-thickness burns”, third-degree burns are serious burns that result in damage to all of layers in the skin, even the fatty tissue that is found under the skin! Third-degree burns may result in charring on the skin, or a hard patch of necrotic tissue. In comparison to first-degree burns that can heal on their own, third-degree burns always require medical treatment, as these kinds of burns may negatively affect the skin’s ability to generate new tissue.
- Fourth-Degree Burns
Fourth-degree burns are the most severe type of burns. Fourth-degree burns occur when muscles, tendons and ligaments are permanently damaged. Fourth-degree burns can be fatal, and if not, may require long-term medical treatment. This is mainly due to the fact that because of the intensity of the burn, nerves, bones, and even blood vessels can be injured, if not damaged completely.
New Categorization For Burn Injuries
Some medical providers utilize a new categorization system for burn injuries, based on how deep the burn injury penetrates. These injuries may be categorized as superficial thickness, partial thickness – superficial, partial thickness – deep, and full thickness. These roughly correlate to the burn degree categorization scale mentioned above.
Causes Of Burn Injuries.
Burn injuries typically result from four causes:
- Chemical burns
Chemical burns occur when people are exposed to certain dangerous chemical compounds, and can be minor or serious. These chemicals can acid-based liquids and other types of hazardous chemicals.
- Electrical burns
Electrical burns are caused by an electrical shock. In addition to the burn injury itself, electrical burns can also lead to cardiac arrest, cardiac arrhythmias and unexpected falls that result in fractures.
- Radiation Burns
Radiation burns can occur as a result of exposure to UV rays, including in tanning booths or radiation therapy. Sunlamps and X-rays can also cause radiation burns. If not well protected, a sunny day at the beach can contribute to the radiation and damage of skin cells, which could lead to skin cancer.
Exposure to hot liquids or gases causes scalding. Steam or hot liquids are common causes for scalding injuries, and these injuries are typically local and not life-threatening. Common causes include burns caused by irons, cooking stoves, and fires.
If you have suffered a burn injury as a result of someone else’s negligence or an injury at a workplace, you may be eligible to file a claim. The Anderson Law Firm offers free consultations to people who suffer from burn injuries, so do not relent in giving us a call at 817-717-4731 or contacting us by fill out our Web contact form to schedule your FREE consultation.