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Jump to: Signs and Symptoms of Necrotizing Fasciitis, Diagnosis of Necrotizing Fasciitis, Risk Factors For Developing Necrotizing Fasciitis, Liability and Necrotizing Fasciitis Claims, Speak With a Lawyer About a Necrotizing Fasciitis Lawsuit
There has probably been a time or two when you’ve heard the term flesh-eating bacteria on the news, and for many people, this bacteria seems like something that won’t happen to them. It’s a relatively rare infection. However, while it’s rare, it occurs in various settings with devastating effects, especially if not caught immediately. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis, it’s essential to learn about your rights when it comes to a necrotizing fasciitis lawsuit.
Necrotizing Fasciitis: What is It?
In layperson’s terms, necrotizing fasciitis is a severe skin infection caused by a bacteria that eats flesh. Several bacterias act in this fashion, but one of the most common include group A streptococcus. This infection can progress rapidly once it starts and can damage the skin and soft tissues as it kills the tissues as it spreads. Therefore, an early diagnosis is often vital to preventing severe side effects, as this condition can result in death without proper treatment.
Signs and Symptoms of Necrotizing Fasciitis
The early symptoms of necrotizing fasciitis are similar to what you’d experience with the flu. You may notice body aches, chills, a fever, diarrhea, and nausea. In addition, you can feel pain at the wound site. As the infection advances, you’ll notice that skin becomes discolored or red, swelling, blisters, low blood pressure, dead tissue, and sepsis.
How Dangerous is Necrotizing Fasciitis?
It’s a very good thing that necrotizing fasciitis is not a common condition as it’s hazardous. Not getting a quick diagnosis and treatment can result in a life-threatening situation. This infection can cause organ failure, sepsis, shock, toxic shock syndrome, and other conditions. For those dealing with an already weakened immune system or who don’t receive the proper treatment in a timely fashion, death is also a real possibility.
Diagnosis of Necrotizing Fasciitis
There are several tools that your doctor can use to determine if your infection is necrotizing fasciitis. These include blood tests, cultures, biopsies, and imaging tests. Without performing these tests, there’s a good chance that an early diagnosis won’t be made, and the longer this infection is allowed to go unchecked, the more likely a severe outcome is possible.
How is Necrotizing Fasciitis Treated?
Once a diagnosis is made, a doctor may order a variety of treatments, including IV antibiotics, debridement where the decaying tissue is removed, amputations, and even spending time in a hyperbaric chamber. After the treatment has been successful and the infection has cleared, patients may require further care, such as skin grafts to replace the removed tissue, surgery to repair the damage, and other treatments.
Risk Factors For Developing Necrotizing Fasciitis
There are a few risk factors involved with the potential for developing necrotizing fasciitis. It may come as no shock that individuals hospitalized, living in nursing homes, or unable to move around easily are at risk as they have the potential for getting bedsores which can be infected with necrotizing fasciitis.
However, some other things can potentially result in this bacteria taking hold. Childbirth, some medications, insect bites, blunt trauma, and abrasions can all create an opening in the skin where the infection can enter. Once there’s a break in the skin, the person can come into contact with dangerous bacteria at a water park, hospital, pool, hotel, nursing home, and other locations.
In addition, some medical conditions can put people at greater risk of necrotizing fasciitis, such as cancer, diabetes, kidney disease, and liver cirrhosis.
Liability and Necrotizing Fasciitis Claims
One of the most critical facets of necrotizing fasciitis lawsuits is liability. Several parties could potentially be held liable in a flesh-eating bacteria claim.
- Hotels, water parks, pools, and other recreational facilities: these facilities have an obligation to maintain their facilities following strict sanitary procedures. Not abiding by these procedures allowing bacteria to thrive and infect a guest makes them potentially liable, such as not testing the water in the pool as required by law.
- Nursing homes, hospitals, and other medical facilities: these facilities can also be held liable for lax sanitary procedures, in addition to neglecting patients, which leads to a delay in diagnosis.
- Medical staff: doctors who miss a diagnosis or staff members who neglect or abuse their patients can also be found liable.
Every situation is different, especially when it comes to a medical condition like necrotizing fasciitis. Often, that’s why it can be vital to speak with an attorney familiar with personal injury claims to help you determine if there is a party that’s liable for you or your loved one’s injuries or death.
Potential Damages From Necrotizing Fasciitis
As the effects of necrotizing fasciitis can last far longer than the infection itself, a variety of damages can be sought in a necrotizing fasciitis lawsuit. These include:
- Medical bills
- Lost income, both current and into the future
- Pain and suffering
- Wrongful death
Knowing the exact amount you deserve is never a cut-and-dry matter, as some items are hard to put a price tag on, such as disfigurement or even determining future medical bills. The severity of your injuries and the circumstances regarding the defendants’ actions can also play a role. That’s where an experienced attorney can be very beneficial.
Speak With a Lawyer in Pennsylvania About a Necrotizing Fasciitis Lawsuit
Assuming whether or not you have a case can be detrimental. Some people believe that they have to deal with the aftermath of this infection on their own and not realizing that there are parties that should be held liable. Speaking with an attorney is ideal because it allows you to learn what your options are and get advice specifically based on your situation.
Have you or a loved one dealt with an infection from a flesh-eating bacteria and are considering a necrotizing fasciitis lawsuit? Contact The Pearce Law Firm Personal Injury & Accident Lawyers P.C. in Pennsylvania today for an initial no-cost consultation. Let our experienced personal injury attorneys near you help you determine whether or not you have a claim based on the specifics of your case. Getting the legal assistance you require can help you focus on healing.
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