Our physical appearance does not define us, but is part of our identity. That’s why suffering a facial injury after a car accident can create severe physical and emotional turmoil. Recovering from facial disfigurement and scarring may require multiple surgeries, painful treatments, and months or years of rehabilitation. Facial scarring and disfigurement can also affect a victim’s mental health, self-esteem, and quality of life.
You could be entitled to financial compensation if you suffered disfigurement or scarring in a Michigan car accident. The compassionate attorneys at Christensen Law have decades of experience representing clients who live with the physical and emotional scars of a facial injury. You deserve justice and accountability for what you’ve been through. Let us help you pursue the results you deserve.
Call or contact Christensen Law today for a free consultation with a trusted facial injury lawyer.
Causes of Facial Disfigurement and Scarring
Both minor and serious car accidents can lead to facial injuries. Common causes of facial disfigurement and scarring include:
- Driver or passenger ejection
- Hitting the car’s windshield, side window, steering wheel, or dashboard
- Flying debris
- Fires and explosions
- Shattered glass
- Heated objects or fluids
- Contact with the vehicle’s airbags
Catastrophic facial injuries can have lifelong consequences. Victims may need ongoing medical treatment with no guarantees of a significant improvement. These intensive procedures can leave victims with physical pain, sky-high medical bills, and emotional highs and lows. A skilled attorney can account for all these losses through a car accident lawsuit.
Common Types of Facial Injuries from Car Accidents
Car accident victims may suffer from various types of facial injuries, including:
- Fractures: Broken noses occur most often in car accidents. Other frequently broken facial bones include the jaw, forehead, cheekbone, and eye sockets.
- Lacerations: Deep facial cuts are common in auto accidents due to shattered glass. Severe lacerations could result in open wounds, permanent scarring, or other deformities.
- Burns: Fire, chemicals, or heated car parts may cause facial burns. Depending on the severity of the burn, victims may suffer from permanent skin discoloration or disfigurement, nerve damage, and an increased risk of infections.
- Eye injuries: Trauma to the eyes due to a car accident could result in blindness.
- Deformities: Some facial injuries, including fractures, lacerations, and burns, can result in permanent deformities. Addressing these deformities to improve an accident victim’s appearance and health may take multiple surgeries over many years.
Types of Scars
Scars are a result of the body’s natural healing process. Minor scars fade over time, but some are permanent and cause complications. Types of scars caused by a car accident include:
- Normal scars: A minor cut may result in a fine raised line that gradually fades and flattens. It will not disappear entirely, but it may become hardly noticeable.
- Keloid scars: A result of an overgrowth of collagen at the site of a wound, a keloid scar extends beyond the original injury and may appear red or darker in color. They can be painful, itchy, and restrict a person’s movement. Keloid scars can occur up to a year after the original injury.
- Hypertrophic scars: Also due to excess collagen at the wound site, hypertrophic scars differ from keloids because they are confined to the boundaries of the original wound. They are typically thick, raised, and sometimes red. Hypertrophic scars may improve over time, but it can take a year or more.
- Contracture scars: These scars form when large areas of skin are damaged or lost, particularly in burn victims. As the skin heals, it tightens, which can restrict movement.
Medical Treatment for Scarring and Disfigurement
Medical treatment for facial scarring and disfigurement depends on the type and severity of the injury. Serious facial injuries may require multiple treatments and surgeries that may incrementally improve an accident victim’s physical appearance. Researchers continue to study and explore novel treatments for severe scarring and disfigurement. Modern treatments include:
- Non-invasive treatments: These may include scar massage, compression therapy, special ointments or dressings, laser or other light treatments, cryotherapy, and corticosteroid injections.
- Emergency surgery: Accident victims may require immediate emergency surgery to stop bleeding or prevent further damage or complications, such as traumatic brain injuries, vision loss, or breathing problems.
- Scar revision surgery: Scar revision refers to a range of surgical techniques to improve or reduce the appearance of a scar. Examples include:
- Skin grafting, in which skin is transferred from a healthy part of the body to cover the scar
- Flap surgery, in which several layers of tissue, including skin, fat, blood vessels, and sometimes muscle, are transferred from a healthy area of the body to the injured region
- Z-plasty, in which triangular flaps of skin are created around the scar to redistribute tension and change the direction of the scar.
- Plastic surgery: Plastic surgery is sometimes necessary after severe facial injuries involving broken bones, burns, or deformities. There are two categories:
- Reconstructive surgery: Typically considered medically necessary, reconstructive surgery corrects deformities to restore normal function and appearance.
- Cosmetic surgery: Not considered a necessity, cosmetic surgery can enhance a patient’s aesthetic appearance.
Accident victims may also suffer from mental health problems after a facial injury, such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Getting counseling to address these struggles is another part of the recovery process for some individuals.
Can I Receive Compensation for Disfigurement?
If you suffered facial disfigurement in a crash in Michigan due to another party’s negligence, you might be able to recover compensation for your injuries. A facial injury attorney can help you pursue money for:
- Excess medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Lost future earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
What Our Detroit Facial Injury Lawyers Can Do for You
Christensen Law is a proven personal injury law firm with a track record of success representing catastrophically injured clients. When we take your case, you can rest assured that our legal team will support you through the entire process. You’ll never feel alone with our facial injury attorneys on your side, and we won’t stop fighting for maximum compensation for you. Call or contact us today for a free case review.