Every year thousands of motorcyclists in Maryland and around the country are involved in accidents. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), as recently as 2018 nearly 5,000 motorcyclists were killed in crashes. 

And for every motorcycle death, there are hundreds and even thousands of more riders injured. In fact, some studies have shown that nearly 80 percent of motorcyclists who are in an accident are injured in that accident. By way of contrast, only 20 percent of car drivers involved in accidents are injured.

Of all the injuries motorcyclists can sustain in an accident, one of the most common is road rash. Road rash occurs when the skin is rubbed or scraped off by a hard surface, in the case of a motorcycle accident, the road. While in many cases road rash can be a rather light injury and treated at home, in others, several layers of skin can be peeled away, resulting in the need for surgery. 

Symptoms of Road Rash

The symptoms of road rash depend on the severity of the case. If the abrasion only affects the outer layer of skin, then symptoms might only include a red spot and maybe some bruising. 

However, if the abrasion is deeper and includes debris from the accident, symptoms can include:

  • Bleeding
  • Bruising
  • Infection from debris in the wound
  • Nerve damage

In conjunction with road rash, if the accident involved a hard, abrupt impact, a person can also experience broken bones. This could increase the amount of pain and make treating both the break and the road rash more complicated.

How to Treat Road Rash

Luckily, road rash can often be treated at home without the need to go to the hospital. However, if you do opt to treat your case of road rash on your own you need to make sure you wash your hands and the wound thoroughly to minimize the chance of infection. 

If there is any debris from the accident in the wound, such as gravel, glass, or dirt, be sure to carefully remove it. Once you have done so, generously apply an antibiotic cream or ointment such as Neosporin. If you are allergic to Neosporin, you could use Bacitracin instead. Using either of these ointments will help fight against infection.

You should then cover your road rash wound with a bandage. Make sure to cover the entire affected area and change the bandage regularly, looking for signs of infection each time you do so. 

Sign You Might Need to See a Doctor

In some cases, road rash requires professional medical attention. If your accident was severe and you were taken to the hospital, there is a good chance it is already being treated by your doctor. However, if you did not go to the hospital after your accident there are several signs to look for that might indicate your case of road rash is severe and you need to see a doctor.

Those signs include:

  • Significant bleeding
  • The road rash covers most or all of one of your limbs
  • There is pus oozing out of the affected area
  • Muscle or bone is visible in the wound
  • There is debris inside the wound that you can’t remove on your own
  • Severe pain 

If you are experiencing any or all of the above symptoms in your case, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Contacting a Personal Injury Lawyer

Finally, if you have suffered road rash from a motorcycle accident that was the result of another driver’s negligence, you should contact an experienced Maryland motorcycle accident lawyer. A good lawyer who specializes in helping motorcycle accident victims recover damages will know how to assess your case and work towards fair compensation. 

Rather than having to pay for your medical treatment or deal with lost wages on your own, a seasoned lawyer will fight to get you the money you deserve.