Though they are protected by the bones of your chest, in some circumstances lungs can suffer trauma, leading to severe health complications that can take a toll on your quality of life.
When discussing lung-health, the conversation mostly revolves around what you can do in your day-to-day life to protect them. Cutting smoking, taking care of colds before they turn into pneumonia, being careful about the quality of air – these actions are known to aid in lung health.
However, did you also know your lungs can get injured? Though they are protected by the bones of your chest, in some circumstances lungs can suffer trauma, leading to severe health complications that can take a toll on your quality of life. In many cases, this trauma is caused by car accidents.
Common Lung Injuries
Lung injuries are often quite severe because they can impact breathing and risk your life. Though you may not think a lung injury is common in a car accident, they do happen. Studies show that lung trauma caused by car accidents are comparable to those resulting from falls from heights.
Here are common types of lung injuries caused by vehicle collisions:
- Punctured lung – the force of the impact can break a rib and cause it to tear into the tissue of the lung.
- Collapsed lung – a common side-effect of a punctured lung. When the tissue is torn, air can build up and put pressure on the lung, and as a result, it cannot expand to circulate air.
- Bruised lung – also called a pulmonary contusion, a bruised lung occurs when trauma makes fluid or blood build-up in the lung. In some cases, symptoms may not appear immediately.
- Smoke inhalation – if the car accident results in a fire and the victim does not manage to escape the vehicle quickly, it’s possible to breathe in the smoke and cause damage to the lung. In some cases, they may even suffocate.
- Chemical burns – if the fire melts some components from the car, the chemicals in their makeup become airborne, and the victim can breathe them in and suffer burns, or chemical poisoning.
How Do Lung Injuries Impact Your Life?
Lung injuries may prevent you from taking part in activities that otherwise brought you pleasure. For instance, if the damage is permanent, you may not be able to perform physical activities the way you used to, such as swimming, or going hiking.
Many of these lung injuries also require expensive treatment, sometimes even long-term. This can take a financial toll on victims if they are unable to cover these costs through their personal health insurance. Additionally, it may also be quite a painful experience, which requires strong pain-control medications like opioids. Some victims of trauma can even develop depression as a result.
What Can You Do?
If you’ve been the victim of a car accident and suffered lung trauma in the state of Missouri, you may be entitled to compensation. Reach out to an experienced St.Louis car accident lawyer to see what your legal options are. Give us a call 24/7 at (314) 361-4242.