The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tells us that 37,461 Americans were killed on U.S. highways and roads in 2016. A large portion of them died as a result of internal organ damage or trauma. Many of them had no visible injuries. Some even walked around immediately after the accident, conversed with police and – saying they were fine – may have assisted other victims. But it turned out later, they weren’t. Cyclists and pedestrians also tend to suffer a larger than normal share of internal injuries after being hit by moving vehicles.
All accident victims can suffer internal organ damage or failure, the type of injury that often occurs with no visible bruises or bleeding. So if you are in any vehicle-related accident, even if you don’t seem to be hurt, visit the emergency room or a doctor as soon after the wreck as you can for a full medical evaluation which can catch these silent killers.
There are several forms of internal organ damage. Some examples of these life-threatening injuries include:
Heart/thoracic distress can include an aortic rupture or full cardiac arrest from the stress – especially if the victim already has heart issues to begin with. Lungs can also suffer damage from a blow to the ribs; even a minor impact could have devastating consequences for a victim who suffers from COPD or some other chronic breathing malady.
Concussion or other traumatic brain injuries (TBI) caused by a blow to the head can result in the brain’s being dynamically and forcefully pushed against the inner skull. This can cause paralysis, permanent brain damage, and sometimes – if not timely treated – sudden death.
Abdominal Injuries have the potential to cause serious, even fatal, damage to a victim’s stomach, liver, kidneys, spleen, and lower gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Emergency (and hurried) surgeries to save the victim’s life might also cause infections and even the wrongful death of a loved one.
The same internal bleeding that leads to TBI can also threaten any bodily function if given enough time to silently do its job. Internal hemorrhaging often goes undetected. But after so much blood is lost, many victims go into shock or coma, and some even die because they didn’t see a doctor in time. Symptoms of internal bleeding can include:
Abdominal pain and swelling
Dizziness or fainting
Swelling and tightness of a limb
Headache and loss of consciousness.
All of the above symptoms must receive immediate medical attention. Some victims might not “feel right” after the accident. But even if they feel fine, all accident victims must be examined by their doctor or an emergency room physician. If you or a loved one suffered internal organ damage, after treatment you should then seek the compensation you and your family deserve. This begins with a call to a Louisiana personal injury attorney.
Some General Clues that You or a Loved One Suffers from Internal Injuries
Swelling in the legs or arms – Swelling is often a telltale sign of internal bleeding associated with a fracture.
Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting – Internal bleeding often causes victims to lose so much blood as to feel weak, dizzy and lightheaded.
Change in blood pressure – A sudden, considerable increase or decrease in blood pressure could be symptomatic of a problem with the way the blood is circulating and may be attributed to an internal injury.
Bruising – Minor bruises notwithstanding (which are present after nearly all vehicle accidents), a large area of deep purple skin can be caused by bleeding into the skin and soft tissues.
Abdominal pain or swelling – If there’s a liver injury, abdominal pain or swelling often accompanies it. Pain becomes acute if left untreated, and the injury becomes severe and eventually life-threatening.
Bloody vomit – Blood in vomit, saliva or any other bodily fluid is often a telltale sign of internal injuries.
Chris J. Roy, Jr. APLC has decades of vehicle accident legal experience. He and his associates have the resources and medical experts you need to prove your case and recover full and fair damages such as:
Pain and suffering
Loss of career or earning capacity
Permanent injury or disability
Wrongful death damages.
Contact Chris today at 318-487-9537 to arrange a free consultation.
Third generation attorney serving Central Louisiana for 30 years. Let our experience help you.