The affected area of skin will appear red, raw, and inflamed. Bleeding is also common. Pain and swelling are immediately felt and may last for several days.
It’s not uncommon to feel no pain at the deepest part of the injured area. However, the skin around the edges of the rash can be extremely painful.
As with any injury that breaks the barrier of the skin, road rash can lead to infection. Signs of a wound infection include:
- Increased pain after the first day
- Swelling and increased redness
- Pus or fluid draining
- Foul-smelling drainage
- Flu-like symptoms, such as fever, chills, and body aches
In rare cases, road rash may cause blood poisoning, a severe infection that spreads through the bloodstream. Septic shock, a potentially life-threatening condition that causes dangerously low blood pressure and organ failure, requires immediate medical attention to prevent complications—including death.