The skin is the largest organ of the body, and it’s responsible for protecting all other systems, including circulatory, digestion, and respiratory. When it becomes damaged by a burn over a widespread area, it can cease to provide adequate protection and complications can arise. Here’s what you need to know about the health complications of burn injuries.
Reduced Body Temperature
Hypothermia, or a low body temperature, is a common result of widespread burns. Many people are surprised that hypothermia occurs after being exposed to heat, but in addition to protecting the body from infection, the skin also regulates body temperature. When damaged, the body begins to lose heat faster than it can generate it. Treatment for hypothermia is particularly excruciating for burned patients — the most efficient way to raise critically low body temperature is through the use of external heat on the surface of the skin.
Reduced Blood Volume
Low blood volume, or hypovolemia, occurs frequently after a serious and widespread burn. This is because many of the body’s delicate blood vessels are damaged by the burn, leading to the loss of fluids and overall amount of blood in the body. When there’s not enough blood for the heart to pump to the organs, failure can occur. Hypovolemia can be treated with blood transfusions and intravenous fluids.
Sepsis, or an infection of the blood, is a serious and life-threatening complication of burns that occur over a large portion of the body. Skin that has been damaged is a poor barrier against dangerous bacteria in the environment, allowing it to infect the bloodstream at an alarming rate. Sepsis is typically treated in the hospital with intravenous antibiotics, but is hard to cure and in many cases, the condition is fatal.
Joint and Bone Problems
Skin that is healing from significant burns produces scar tissue that looks, feels, and functions quite different from normal skin. It stretches tight over the bones, which can sometimes cause joints to become painful and even dislocate. In some cases, joint dysfunction or dislocation can become permanent.
Should You Consult with a Texas Personal Injury Attorney?
Suffering a burn injury is nothing less than devastating and permanently life altering. If someone else’s negligence caused you to become injured, you deserve compensation. We may be able to help. Call Bevel | Gould Personal Injury Lawyers today for an appointment to discuss the details of your case at (214)-580-2555.