Contact dermatitis is a condition involving the inflammation, redness, burning, itchiness, or soreness of the skin after coming into contact with specific substances. This usually manifests as a rash or a patch of itchiness on specific parts of the skin. In severe cases, the rash can involve breaks or cracks in the skin and can sometimes lead to more serious conditions.
There are two basic types of contact dermatitis: irritant and allergic. Irritant contact dermatitis results from coming into contact with substances that are poisonous, too alkaline/acidic, or are inherently dangerous for the skin. Examples of these are burns caused by handling toxic chemicals.
Allergic contact dermatitis is caused by the person’s own allergic reaction to a substance. A common example of this is where a person comes into contact with certain dyes or fragrances that they’re allergic to (but which other persons might not be sensitive to).
Contact dermatitis is sometimes claimed as a work-related injury or on-the-job injury. In some cases, an employer can be held liable for damages caused by negligence. An example of this is where an employer fails to provide safety gloves or other equipment, or if they knowingly allow persons to handle dangerous substances over long periods of time. Most of these involve irritant contact dermatitis claims.
Claims can be filed also for allergic contact dermatitis. For instance, a supervisor or employer might be found liable if they instruct a person to handle materials or substances which they are known to be allergic to. Thus, in any instance, most contact dermatitis lawsuits involve some sort of negligence or recklessness on the part of an employer or supervisor.
Damages often cover medical costs, lost wages, allergy testing fees, hospital bills, and other expenses. Lastly, contact dermatitis claims are often linked to product liability and defective product claims.
If you suspect that you have had a contact dermatitis injury, you may consider taking the following steps:
- Keep the packaging and unused product if the injury stemmed from the use of a product.
- Obtain statements and testimony from witnesses (for cases involving on-the-job injuries).
- Make a written account of the incident or incidents leading to the injury.
- Take pictures or video documentation of your skin condition.
- Hire a lawyer for help with legal documents and filing processes.
Taking these steps can help provide you with useful information that can be used as evidence in the event of a lawsuit or legal claim.
Contact dermatitis can often lead to serious injuries. Severe allergic reactions can often affect other bodily systems, such as breathing and heart rate. You may wish to hire a personal injury lawyer if you or a loved one has been affected by contact dermatitis. Your attorney can provide you with legal advice and can represent you if you need to make a court appearance.