It’s been a week since the SUV made you roll your bike on the Beltway and your road rash doesn’t seem to be getting any better. You have an appointment at MedStar tomorrow, but you’re getting really worried about whether or not the rash is somehow making you sick.

Over the past few days, you’ve been coughing uncontrollably, feeling really tired, and your wounds are aching, hot, and oozing pus. You’ve cleaned and wrapped them every day, but they still look pretty bad—and now you’re sick on top of it.

Could they be related? Since your wound is not healing, could you have permanent damage? What is going on?

Three Potentially Permanent Damages of Road Rash

According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 90 percent of motorcycle injuries result in road rash (skin abrasions, lacerations and cuts). Although road rash is a common occurrence for motorcyclists, unfortunately, some instances are worse than others and can cause serious complications. These complications include:


Since road rash can expose tissue, muscle, and bone—and cause multiple types of debris, dirt and bacteria to be introduced into the blood stream—infections are a high risk for road rash injuries. One of the more debilitating types of infections you can get as a result of the abrasions is a Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection (MRSA). MRSA is a bacterial staph infection that is resistant to most antibiotics and is therefore hard to treat. It spreads easily and can infect your lungs, urinary tract, and blood. If not treated quickly the infection can be fatal.


Road rash infections can cause increased swelling around the injured area, producing large amounts of excess fluid. This fluid can disrupt blood flow, cause an enormous amount of pain, and affect organ and muscle functions.


Road rash has different effects on different people and depending on the severity of the injury—a lucky few may escape without permanent scars. However, for the other 85 percent of road rash victims, scarring is inevitable. Since the top layers of skin are basically flayed off, new skin must form in order to close the wound. This new formation is tighter than normal skin—in order to keep the wound closed—and doesn’t produce hair follicles or sweat glands. During recovery, the skin may also become inflamed, damaging healthy skin and melanin cells, and making the new skin a different color than the skin around it. These types of scars are usually permanent, although they can fade over the course of years. The scars can be disfiguring depending on where they’re located and can affect large areas of the body.

It is extremely important to make sure you receive proper care and treatment after any type of road rash—even when you think it may be minor—to prevent further complications and permanent damage.  

Don’t Go Through Your Recovery Alone

Clearly, road rash is not always as simple as cleaning the wound and moving on with your life. Many road rash injuries require multiple reconstructive surgeries and expensive ongoing treatment for complication monitoring and care.

If you were the victim of a motorcycle crash, you may be entitled to receive a much larger compensation to cover your medical expenses than your insurance company is offering. Don’t settle with an inadequate settlement, let us help you fight for what you and your injuries deserve.

Call now for a free consultation and review of your case. Remember, you don’t have to go through this alone, we’re here to help support and guide you to a better recovery.

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