Wound Infections: Complications of Bicycle Accidents
When a car causes a bicyclist to crash, serious injuries can occur. Even if the bicyclist is fortunate to only suffer road rash and wounds, it can still be serious. This is because wounds can get infected and lead to serious health issues.
A cyclist can suffer any of the following injuries that can lead to infections, including:
- Abrasions, such as scrapes on knees or other body parts.
- Lacerations, such as a jagged tear in the skin or a bone fracture that breaks through the skin.
- Puncture wounds, such as a sharp item that a cyclist falls on that punctures the skin.
Any of these wounds cyclists sustain can become infected very quickly, especially if the wound isn’t treated quickly and appropriately. Consequently, an infection may occur for the following reasons:
- Improper cleaning of the wound
- Delayed medical treatment and wound is left open too long
- Remaining object in the wound
Unfortunately, when a wound isn’t cleaned out thoroughly or dressed properly and quickly after the injury, a wound infection can develop. This is because bacteria can enter the open wound. Not only can wounds be painful, but infected wounds can lengthen a recovery and may even be life-threatening.
Symptoms of a Wound Infection
When infection sets in, there will be some symptoms, including:
- Discharge from the wound
- Serious pain
If you have any of these symptoms following a bicycle accident, it is important to seek immediate medical treatment. Prompt medical care can minimize infections and serious complications. In some instances, very serious complications can occur from wounds, such as:
MRSA, which stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a type of bacteria. Staph bacteria often lives on our skin and can get into the body through a wound. People with MRSA skin infections often will see the wound look red, swollen, and fluid or pus may come out of the wound. Additionally, the skin will be painful and they will have a fever. Although rare, some people develop blood and joint infections as a result of MRSA.
Sepsis can start out as a bacterial infection from a scrape or cut, but bacteria can eventually overwhelm the bloodstream. People with sepsis will have an elevated heart rate, high fever, fast breathing, chills, skin rash, clammy skin, bluish color around mouth, and elevated white blood cell count. If sepsis goes on for too long without treatment, it can lead to septic shock, brain damage, organ damage and even death.
Typically these two serious complications can be treated with antibiotics; however, if wounds are neglected, infections can worsen. In some instances, surgery might be required to remove the wound infection. In severe cases, injured cyclists may be fighting for their lives and may rack up serious medical bills.
If you or a loved one has suffered wound infections after a bicycle accident in Florida with a negligent driver, make sure you seek legal counsel. It is important to have someone in your corner who knows the laws and who can make sure you get all the compensation you need and deserve. For a free consultation, call the Law Offices of David Benenfeld at 866-9 HELP NOW or 866-943-5766 to speak with an experienced bicycle accident attorney.