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Is motorcycle accident road rash considered catastrophic?

On Behalf of | Mar 14, 2023 | Motorcycle Accidents

After a motor vehicle accident, victims often hear the phrase catastrophic injury. Usually, they hear this term in connection with obtaining as much compensation as possible.

The worse an injury is, the more damages you may obtain in your accident claim, but what makes an injury catastrophic? Merriam-Webster defines a catastrophe as “a momentous tragic event…extreme misfortune…utter overthrow…ruin.”

In the context of vehicle accident injuries, road rash sustained in a motorcycle accident may qualify as catastrophic, potentially increasing your compensation.

Third-degree road rash

Road rash is essentially an abrasion caused by friction. Most abrasions are minor, resulting in little more than discomfort. However, third-degree road rash often has devastating effects, including long-term mobility issues, scarring and disfigurement, especially without treatment.

In third-degree road rash, the abrasion penetrates several layers of skin, often leaving muscle or bone uncovered and visible. Severe cases may also involve foreign materials embedded in the wound, such as glass, dirt or gravel.

The risk of infection is high in motorcycle accidents that result in road rash. Some victims may also develop life-threatening complications like septic shock or blood poisoning.

Treatment options

When superficial, road rash is treatable at home. However, in severe cases, medical attention is necessary. Two surgical treatments used to encourage healing are:

  1. Wound debridement: the surgical removal of dead tissue and foreign debris
  2. Skin grafting: surgically grafting healthy skin from the body onto the injury site

As you might expect, these treatments are costly. That is why you must ensure your motorcycle accident claim accounts for all harm suffered in the crash.

Experienced counsel can help show that your road rash is catastrophic enough to warrant a substantial award under Indiana accident and injury compensation laws.