When Missouri motorcyclists hear “road rash” or “road burn”, they may think of mile scrapes. While these scrapes are painful and take a while to heal, they are not too serious. In fact, you can treat them at home with the right first-aid care. But what about more severe cases?

VeryWell Health claims that severe road rash can have a serious impact on a sufferer. Unlike its mild counterpart, severe road rash can involve large areas of skin. You may injure up to 10 percent or more of the body. In addition, the injury can go deep below the surface level of skin. Some cases involve lacerations extending all the way to the bone. Muscle and other soft tissue gets exposed. You could end up with debris embedded deep in the flesh, which is a huge risk for infection.

Nerve damage is a big concern as well. If the abrasion reaches deep enough, it damages nerves. This can lead to burning, tingling or numbness in the affected area. A person may be unable to feel temperature changes or physical touch. In some cases, nerve damage is irreversible and sensation is never restored to the level it once was.

Skin grafts and other surgery may also be necessary. It can help prevent infection, which can happen in no time at all with 10 percent of the body exposed to pathogens. It can also help with scarring. But many victims will combat scarring and disfigurement for the rest of their lives. These things are what make severe road rash such an issue.