Dog bites are often severe, leaving people with damaged tissues, bones, ligaments and more. As the skin is torn and the body is damaged, there is a high risk of developing serious scars during recovery.
Unfortunately, a severe dog bite or attack may require multiple surgeries and medical intervention. Those surgeries may be used to address scarring, but many are focused on giving back as much mobility and function to the person as possible.
How damaging can scars be?
Scars have the potential to be painful and itchy. They are generally made up of fibrous tissues, so they may feel raised and stiff. Keloid scars are among the worst, because they appear a different color than the surrounding skin, and they may extend past the point of injury.
Sometimes, keloids are combined with contractures, which are areas where a large part of the skin has been damage. When it scars, the edges of the skin are pulled together. This makes the skin tighter and may make it difficult to move the joints, muscles or tendons.
What can you do if you develop serious scarring after a dog bite?
Many people don’t realize that severe scars may limit their mobility or lead to other issues. Fortunately, there are some ways to address scarring. Options may include having surgery to do a skin graft and replace the damaged tissues, surgery to release areas where a scar is restricting motion and laser treatment to force the skin to reheal and repair itself. With any of these processes, it’s likely that a patient will need to have multiple surgeries or treatments.
Additional options for treatment may include chemical peels, which may remove a scar by removing the top layers of skin over time, or topical treatments, like ointments, which help keep the skin hydrated during healing.
After a dog bite, scarring has to be considered during treatment
If a dog bite leads to serious scarring, it’s important to make sure that the compensation you receive is enough to seek treatment for it. Scars can be debilitating depending on where they are, and you deserve treatment to help make them more comfortable.