Riding a motorcycle may be a guilty pleasure for you. You may crave the feel of the wind, the freedom and comradery, and the thrills that go along with riding. With those pleasures, however, are some very real risks.
Your vulnerability to injury in a crash represents your greatest risk. Without the safety of a passenger compartment, your injuries could prove severe. Of all of the injuries you could suffer, you may not consider the possibility of suffering from a compound fracture. For reasons that become clear below, this injury could easily threaten your life and will definitely require a lengthy and expensive recovery.
What is a compound fracture?
Simply put, a compound fracture is a bone break in which the bone pierces the skin. This leaves the wound open to the air, which gives bacteria a way into your body. In addition, as the injury occurs and you lay on the ground, debris such as fibers from clothing, gravel, road grime and more could get into the wound. Adrenalin and shock may keep you from initially feeling the pain associated with this injury, but not for long.
What is the greatest risk of a compound fracture?
Understanding what type of injury this is gives a clue as to the greatest risk associated with it. Even though you could experience issues with the bone not healing properly, the primary concern in a compound fracture is the risk of infection, which increases with the severity of the wound. Without quick and aggressive treatment, a bone infection could occur, and this could mean extra surgeries, extra care and extra time to recover.
For this reason, a compound fracture is considered a medical emergency requiring immediate surgery. The surgeon must clean the wound thoroughly in order to get out as much, if not all, of the debris as possible. The surgeon then irrigates the wound in order to flush out anything that may be left and to make it as clean as possible. Only then will the attention turn to stabilizing the bone. You will need antibiotics, pain medication and possibly a tetanus shot at the very least as you recover from the surgery. If all goes well, you may not need any additional surgeries unless complications arise.
What type of recovery time could you face?
A “normal” closed fracture takes around three months to heal if all goes well. An open fracture takes at least four months, and that is if everything goes right. Considering the treatment necessary for this type of injury, it will undoubtedly cost significantly more than a closed fracture. So, in addition to the extended recovery time, your medical and related expenses will be substantially higher. To make matters worse, you may not be able to return to work during this time depending on a variety of factors.
If your injury resulted from the negligence or recklessness of another person, you may find it advantageous to pursue compensation through the filing of a personal injury claim in a New Mexico civil court. A successful claim could provide you with the funds you need to help with the inevitable financial losses you will incur. Considering what is at stake, you would be wise to work with an experienced attorney as you begin this legal journey.