Dog bites are up there the most common injuries experienced among both children and adults. The Center for Disease Control estimates nearly 4.5 million dog bites occur in the United States each year. Of those dog bites, over 800,000 require medical care. They can carry fatal bacteria and viruses that can utterly change a person’s life. So, how did something go from being warm and fuzzy to attacking a grown adult?
Often, the human has taken some measure or conducted some activity that has incited the animal’s aggression instinct. People don’t realize that smoking, loud music, fireworks, and other commonplace activities can cause a dog to become aggressive. Even extending your hand to pet a strange dog can cause them to snap. When that snap happens, and they break the skin, then it’s likely you’ll have to go through several treatments to protect yourself from illness, disease, and to treat injury. You should contact our Florida personal injury attorneys to find out the next steps to take.
Without a valid vaccination history, are there any signs that the dog could have had rabies, or carry the rabies virus, you’ll likely need treatment. Fortunately, rabies treatment has drastically changed in the last decade or so. Shots are now administered into the arm, and the treatment is not dispersed over the course of a few hours, but four weeks.
Annually, they’re between 1 and 3 cases reported in the United States. However, even though rabies is extremely rare among humans, it doesn’t stop medical professionals from administering treatment. The concern was getting treatment into place right away is that once a person begins to show signs of rabies infection, there is not any treatment. The remedies provided for rabies are preventive. It stops the virus before it has the opportunity to engage the immune system and begin showing clinical symptoms. Once clinical symptoms arise, medical professionals can do nothing but make the person comfortable.
Possible Infections and More
Possible infections from dog bites include Streptococcus, Pasteurella, Staphylococcus, and Capnocytophaga. Not all of these are deadly, but all require antibiotic treatment. Capnocytophaga can result in the need to amputate fingers, feet, legs, arms, and commonly noses.
Even if you were able to clean the wound and apply antibiotic gel such as Neosporin right away, it’s likely that the wound will become infected. Dogs carry so much bacteria in their saliva that if they break the skin, you need to get medical care. Without treatment, any of these infections can develop into severe issues. It may cause the need for skin grafts, amputation, tissue removal, and days are weeks spent in a hospital or rehabilitation facility.
Capnocytophaga Infection Treatment
The running joke is that this particular infection is as hard to treat as it is to say. This is a common bacteria found in the mouths of both dogs and cats, and I can cause serious health issues for people. You don’t have to worry if your dog or cat has the bacteria, but if they break your skin, then you need medical help.
Although infection from this type of bacteria is rare when it does happen, it has a gangrenous effect. Early symptoms include vomiting, fever, pus blisters, diarrhea, joint pain, and confusion. But it results in heart attacks, gangrene, and kidney failure. About 3 in 10 people who contract infection from the bacteria die.
Treatment for this infection calls for an aggressive round of antibiotics and careful monitoring for the progression of the infection. Typically patients will be kept in the hospital during the course of treatment, which can result in costly medical fees. In addition to the costs for staying in the hospital, you’ll have fees from amputation surgery, aggressive antibiotics, the rehabilitation you’ll need to make a full recovery.
Who Should You Call After a Dog Bite? Tampa Personal Injury Lawyers
Dog bites may not seem like a big deal, but they can quickly become very costly. Many people initially think that they can go home and heal without seeking professional care, and then realized days or weeks later that they need medical intervention. Many people think that they can keep infection at bay, and simply can’t. If you realize that your medical bills are racking up very quickly as a result of the dog bite, you may need to pursue compensation from the dog’s owner.
Often homeowners insurance and some types of personal injury protection will offer support for dog bite victims. There is no fool-proof guarantee that an insurance company will step in the place, and you may need to take proper action directly against the owner of the animal. To understand more about the legal elements of resolving the dog bite, contact the law offices of Winters & Yonker.