Broken Rib Injuries from Car Accidents
In the wake of a car accident, it’s easy to gloss over any injuries you might have sustained. With your adrenaline pumping your body full of chemicals to ease the pain of the impact, it is indeed tempting to forgo an examination by an EMT or doctor. In many cases, the reality of broken bones doesn’t set in until after the smoke has cleared. Sore ribs after a car accident can be a sign that you may have actually broken something.
Broken ribs are incredibly common among accident victims, particularly drivers. The force of the steering wheel on the chest can cause serious breakages and fracture upon impact. Blunt trauma to the chest frequently hospitalizes victims of car accidents. Not to be underestimated, even bruised ribs after a car accident deserve medical attention. In many cases, there may be cause for legal action if a victim has suffered such injuries as a result of someone else’s negligence.
Side Effects and Symptoms
Anytime a person experiences blunt force trauma, damage can impact bones, lungs, blood vessels and other internal systems. Immediate medical attention is recommended for every accident victim for this precise reason. Symptoms of broken or fractured ribs include pain in the chest, pain during inhalation and pain when pressure is applied to the area. Victims may also experience shortness of breath, headaches, light-headedness and dizziness.
Upon receiving medical attention, victims may require x-rays to determine the severity of their injuries. Because not all fractures show up on x-rays, though, a doctor may order other tests to better understand the nature of the injury. Without proper medical attention, though, some people with broken ribs after a car accident develop pneumonia. Because breathing becomes painful with such an injury, pneumonia becomes more likely. Left untreated, pneumonia can be deadly.
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Treatment for Broken Ribs
Thankfully, broken ribs often heal on their own almost no medical intervention. While you might put a cast on a broken arm or ankle, it’s not exactly feasible to put individual ribs in such a cast. While many assume wrapping the torso helps to treat broken ribs, the reality is that the practice can discourage deep breathing and increase the risk of pneumonia. Time is the most common treatment used for most people with broken ribs.
Instead of working to heal the breakage, doctors work to manage the pain endured by the victim. Pain medications and muscle relaxers can help patients get by in the weeks it takes for broken, bruised or fractured ribs to heal. In cases where the patient has suffered a severe break or has damaged their organs, surgery may be necessary.
Legal Options for Car Accident Victims
Depending on the events leading up to an accident, victims with broken ribs may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. When a motorist behaves carelessly, recklessly or negligently, they may indeed owe damages to those injured in a crash they caused. For example, if a drunk driver travels the wrong way down a one-way street and collides with another vehicle, the victim may opt to seek legal action against them.
Should an irresponsible driver be found responsible for another person’s injuries, they may be court-ordered to pay for repairs, medical bills, medications and other losses related to the wreck. If a victim had to miss work to recover from their injuries, for example, the wages they lost out on while recuperating can be sought in a lawsuit. Everything from physical therapy to the emotional or mental impact the crash had on the victim can be factored into a settlement.
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Finding an Accident Attorney
There are time limitations on how long an accident victim can wait to pursue legal action. In many cases, victims have as little as two years from the date of their injury to file a lawsuit. While that may seem like plenty of time, the months can fly by, jeopardizing your chances of filing in time. If you’ve been involved in a wreck that left you with broken, bruised or fractured ribs, the time to talk with an attorney is now.
Not just any car accident lawyer will do, though. It’s important to connect with an experienced attorney who has a proven track record of success. If you need help finding the attorney that is right for your case, Lawsuit Info Center can help. In addition to the Injury Reward Estimate Calculator we feature on our site, we also offer guidance on lawyers in your area. To get started, simply call us at 877-810-4067. Eager to help you get the legal advice you need, Lawsuit Info Center is happy to help get you on the road to justice.
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