A heart injury is a less common but frightening injury a person can suffer in a car accident.
Car accidents cause a wide variety of injuries ranging from minor bruises and sprains to serious fractures and internal injuries. Some of the most commonly reported car accident injuries are fractures, back injuries, whiplash, and head injuries. However, one of the less common and scariest injuries that a person can suffer in a car accident is a heart injury. Any injury to the heart, however minor, can be life-threatening.
The main cause of heart injury arising from a car crash is impacting the chest against the steering wheel or dashboard of the vehicle. Heart injuries are difficult to diagnose, because there are no immediate signs of external injury. It may take weeks and even months after the crash for symptoms to present themselves.
Any new symptoms should be reported to a doctor, even if they occur weeks or months after the crash. Delayed symptoms could be signs of an underlying serious injury. Prompt treatment of heart injuries is important to prevent any serious life-threatening complications. The are two common heart injuries related to car accidents – myocardial contusion and traumatic aortic disruption.
The bruising of the heart muscle is referred to as myocardial contusion. This bruising is often caused when a driver’s chest hits the steering wheel forcefully during a crash. The bruising can range from being minor to severe. Common symptoms of myocardial contusion include pain in the sternum or front of the ribs, shortness of breath, chest pressure or pain, nausea, vomiting, and a racing heart beat.
Traumatic Aortic Disruption
A serious and potentially life-threatening heart injury resulting from car accidents is traumatic aortic rupture. It occurs when the largest artery in the body, the aorta, is ruptured or torn due to the impact of the crash. The aorta branches out from the heart and supplies blood to the rest of the body. Any disruption from the injury is significant and blood may pump out rapidly. The condition is often life-threatening, because of the profuse bleeding that can result from the tear or rupture. However, prompt treatment can help manage the condition and prevent any complications.
Seeking Damages for a Heart Injury
A heart injury from a car accident often requires extensive and prolonged treatment. It is important to make sure that all past and future medical costs and other expenses resulting from the accident are covered by the claim. Get legal help from a St. Louis automobile accident law firm to protect your rights. Call The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. at (314) 361-4242 for a free consultation.