Dog bites can be anything from little nips to a full strength clamp down with some breeds’ bite force measuring in the hundreds of pounds per square inch (psi). Most dog bites result in soft-tissue injuries such as bruising but if a dog does decide to use its full bite force when biting a human, it can lead to fractures, broken bones, blood poisoning, even death. For fractures, 87% of dog bite induced facial fractures occurred in children under 16 years of age.
Facial Fractures in Children
Children are the most susceptible to facial fractures caused by dog bites. Due to a child’s small size, it’s easier for the dog to reach the child’s head and neck. Though facial fractures from dog bites are rare, there were a few cases where multiple children had separate cases of fractures to their cheekbones and upper jaws.
Unfortunately in a couple of those cases, there was widespread nerve damage to their faces. Due to the dog bites, one child was unable to fully open her right eye. Another child had continued weakness in his cheek where the affected cheek slumped downward. For nerve damage, physicians can and often locate other blood vessels which can be implanted in the damaged area. However, due to the extensive damage to the child’s face, they were unable to locate a suitable vessel.
Physicians have successfully fixed facial fractures in children suffering from dog bites. In one case, the physician was able to surgically repair a child’s eye socket by removing the affected skin, mending the fracture, and reattaching the upper portion of the child’s face. Though she suffered from eyelid drooping shortly after the surgery, physicians were able to correct the condition as soon as the problem was noticed.
My Child Suffered from a Dog Bite
If your child was playing with a strange dog and suffered bites anywhere to his or her body, take them to the emergency room immediately. Though you may only see superficial wounds, there could be deep injuries that only a physician can diagnose.
If your child’s medical bills soar due to a dog bite, you can call The Advocates at any time to discuss possible action against the owner of the dog. You will be immediately connected to an experienced dog bite attorney who can help you and your child get back to their pre-injury status!