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Bitten by a Dog? Signs and Symptoms to Look Out For

by RachelleW
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When you are bitten by a dog, you may escape with no serious injuries. Unfortunately, that is often the exception, rather than the rule. In many of these situations, dogs will introduce various types of bacteria into a person’s body upon biting them, meaning you could be at risk of contracting a number of serious diseases, including rabies. If you are bitten by a dog, here are some signs and symptoms that will indicate you need medical assistance as soon as possible.

Wound Closure

The first thing you need to assess after a dog bite is if you’ll require wound closure from a medical professional. This determination is best made by a doctor, particularly if there is significant bleeding. If the wound is deep, jagged, or gaping you might require stitches. Be sure the medical professional doesn’t attempt to glue a dog bite as it traps the bacteria inside and doesn’t allow for proper healing. 

Redness and Warmth

If you were bitten on your hand, arm, or elsewhere, always watch closely for any signs of redness or warmth in the affected part of your body. Should you start to notice either of these as well as the forming of red streaks, extreme tenderness, or any pus or fluid oozing from your wound, this likely means it is infected. Also, be aware of any lumps forming as these could be filled with pus and bacteria.

Muscle Weakness or Loss of Function

Should you experience a noticeable amount of muscle weakness or loss of function in your limb, this is a serious problem that needs to be addressed right away. More than likely, this will mean you have suffered ligament, tendon, and maybe muscle damage. If this has happened, surgery will be needed to correct the problem. If you experience this symptom, go to the closest emergency department to get immediate attention.

Numbness, Tingling, or Burning

When you begin to have a hand that is numb or feels as if it is tingling or burning, this is a sure sign you have sustained nerve damage following your dog bite. While it is possible you may recover, it is also possible the damage could be permanent and may impact your personal and professional life. If this occurs, consult with an attorney like Andy Van Le & Associates, PC Law Center to find out how to seek compensation for your injuries. The sooner you contact an attorney, the better. They may be able to help you receive compensation for lost wages if you’re unable to attend work due to your injuries, future loss of wages if the bite caused severe damage, and other types of recompense.

Pain that Gets Worse Over Time

While the dog bite may at first appear like nothing to worry about, that can all change when the pain you thought was going away starts to get worse and worse over time. Remember, even if you only have a small puncture wound, the dog likely introduced harmful bacteria to your bloodstream with their bite. If you ignore the pain and assume it will go away, you could be placing yourself in a potentially life-threatening situation. If you’re unsure, it’s always best practice to get checked out by a medical professional to assess if further intervention may be necessary.

When you have been bitten by a dog, don’t take any chances with your health or your ability to be financially compensated for your medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering. Instead, seek out medical treatment right away, and also hire an attorney who can protect your rights and get you the substantial compensation you need and deserve.

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