Boston Burn Injury Lawyer

According to the American Burn Association, there are almost 500,000 burn injuries that require medical treatment in the United States each year and over 3,000 more smoke inhalation related deaths. Harsh burn injuries caused by negligent behavior need to be handled by an experienced attorney who knows the local laws to deliver you the compensation you deserve. Especially considering that burn injury treatments have the potential to run tens of thousands of dollars, you will want an advocate on your side who can fight for fair compensation.

Common Types of Burn Injuries

There are four main types of burns:

  1. Thermal burns. These are caused by steam or boiling water, fire, or heat given off from an extremely hot source. Explosive gases like propane are another cause. Trade jobs like welding and boiler technicians are particularly prone to thermal burns.
  2. Chemical burns. Substances with extreme pH levels, like acids and alkaline chemicals, cause extreme harm to the skin. These substances will continue to dissolve skin and muscle tissue until the burning agent is rendered inert by balancing the pH. Alkali chemicals react with skin lipids, and cause comparatively more damage than acidic substances.
  3. Electrical. Exposure to electrical current causes injury all throughout the body. If you are not grounded and electricity enters the body, severe internal damage will happen, not just at the point of contact.
  4. Radiation. Certain types of radiation, like beta or gamma, cause serious burns. Those suffering from radiation burns typically need to be decontaminated.

In addition to burn types, there are three levels of burn severity:

  • 1st degree. Detectable by red skin, pain, swelling, and mild rashes.
  • 2nd degree. Second degree burns affect the inner skin layers and are accompanied by blisters and thicker skin. Second degree burns larger than 3 inches are considered major burns.
  • 3rd degree. These affect far under the skin. Skin may lose feeling and turn black or white. The skin takes on a leathery appearance, and large boils may appear. Third degree burns are the most deadly.

If a burn affects your skeletal system or tendon tissue, your burn may be classified as a 4th degree burn. These are very serious and may permanently impair movement.

The Financial Implications of Burns

Due to the seriousness of burns, they often require extensive medical treatment to overcome. This may range from simple ointments for first degree burns to extensive hospital care, reconstructive surgery, and skin replacements and grafts for third degree burns. Burn injuries cost Americans billions every year due to hospital expenses. Burn injuries are, on average, twice as expensive as the average hospital stay, and victims are typically hospitalized for more than a week.

Each day of hospitalized care costs nearly $2k. The full range of treatments and surgery costs over half a million dollars, and some patients may pay up to $700,000.

The average cost of a burn is more difficult to pinpoint. This is because operating costs, standard of living, and patient care varies heavily from one state to another. Room costs, medication, dressing, and length of stay also make a specific number hard to estimate. One paper published in 2012 cites the average treatment cost to be $73,532. Another study cited the cost of chemical burns to average above $20,000.

However, even small burns can cost a lot of money. Compensation awarded for burn claims covers not just hospital treatment, but pain and suffering, too. Always ally yourself with an expert attorney before filing a complex burn claim.

Contact Us Today

If you have been the victim of a burn injury, contact Sweeney Merrigan Law. Burn injuries are not only painful but can come with lasting damage and be very expensive to treat. Our team will fight for fair compensation to ensure that you can focus on healing. Call (617) 391-9001 to set up a free consultation today.