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Chest Pain After Car Accident – Chest Contusion Car Accident


The rapid deceleration can cause blunt-force trauma injuries to the chest. These injuries can be serious and life-threatening.

The human chest comprises ribs, sternum, clavicle, lungs, chest wall, heart, esophagus, diaphragm, and major blood vessels. When a blunt force is applied to the body, it rarely damages only one anatomical component; often, other components are impacted as well.

st louis car accident chest injuries
The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C.
Based on 81 reviews
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This attorney is very smart, very experienced, returns phone calls and knows the answers when asked. One call and I knew this was a great law firm for auto accidents.
Response from the owner: Our law firm appreciates this. This is a comment we get from so many people who call…”none of the lawyers we called told me all the things that you did.” Whether we take a car accident case or not, helping people is a good thing.
5 Star Lawyer for sure! Best you will find in Saint Louis.
Response from the owner: Thanks for the 5 Star Rating. Reviews like this are great. Injury victims quickly figure out the TV advertisers are not good. We work hard at being the best we can be and it reflects in our representation of car accident victims.
Watch this lawyer in action. Was way better than all the others. Get this lawyer for an automobile accident for sure.
Response from the owner: Thanks for the recommendation. Besides doing cases, our attorneys train for this. Hard work, case knowledge and technique is key to success in car accident litigation.
Very pleased with The Hoffmann Law Firm. Lawyers are attentive, friendly and go the distance to force the settlement you want. The TV lawyers recommend low offers. This law firm gets the maximum.
Response from the owner: We get calls from car accident victims that had to fire the TV lawyers that they hired. They give the same two reasons: 1) they never spoke to a lawyer at the Big TV law firms, only a paralegal, and 2) the paralegal recommended they accept a low offer. At our law firm, you only talk to the lawyer and if an offer is low we tell you to sue. Thanks!
You will love this car accident lawyer.
Response from the owner: You are the best! Thanks for the review. Our attorneys work hard but it all starts with a great client.
Several lawyers said to call this lawyer because he is the best. You will appreciate this law firm. Helped with the injury and property claims. Attentive and knowledgeable. Great reputation in St Louis.
Response from the owner: Thanks Lexi. Our #1 source of cases is other lawyers referring us cases that are too big for them to handle.
Would use this accident law firm. Best in Saint Louis. Highly rated and it shows. After one phone call, you just know this attorney is better. 5 Stars!!
Response from the owner: Thanks for recommending our lawyers in St Louis. There is a major difference in lawyers as you well know.
Great law firm thanks Leah for the referral
Response from the owner: Appreciate you recommending our law firm. Car accident litigation is all we do and specializing allows us to focus.
Car accident lawyers on tv are not good . Get this attorney ! He is a pro !!
Response from the owner: Thanks Nathan. TV lawyers market for car accidents, use paralegals instead of lawyers and give their employees settlement quotas hence forcing cheap settlements. At our law firm, you get a lawyer who keeps pushing forward for more.
A+ attorney. Smart. Helpful. Great for automobile accident cases. Located in saint louis, missouri. Use him!
Response from the owner: Thanks. Car accident cases are difficult without the right attorney and great clients. Much appreciated.
Quality lawyer. Best law firm for a car accident. Advice was way better than other lawyers I called in St. Louis. Helped with property and injury.
Response from the owner: Thanks. The TV lawyer advertisers are just car accident settlement mills. As soon as people call a real attorney, they always tell us how much better and more helpful we were. Appreciate this.
Get this lawyer if you have an automobile accident. Simply the best!
Response from the owner: Thanks Lizzy. Recommendations from other is the best way to find a car accident attorney.
This lawyer is big time. Smooth. The other lawyers on the other side were not nearly as good as this attorney. I recommend friends in St Louis to him for accident injuries and they all say the same thing…”that lawyer is great.”
Response from the owner: Very nice of you to say. Our lawyers work hard on auto accident cases.
Family used this car accident attorney after a crash. Located in St Louis. This lawyer answers the phone and will walk you through the process. Knows his stuff!
Response from the owner: Taking calls, going over the car accident injury and property process is important. Clients that call always say we are the only lawyers that explained everything. Much appreciated.
Tried the lawyers on TV. They were not good. Hired this car accident lawyer instead because he had great reviews. The reviews are correct. This attorney is as good as they get. He does big injury cases that need to be litigated.
Response from the owner: Car accident lawyers on TV do not litigate cases. It is mass production. They have quotas. Local attorneys are best on auto accidents.
Very very good at injury claims for car wrecks. Use this St Louis attorney. Two thumbs up!
Response from the owner: Thanks for the review! All we do is accidents. When you specialize, your knowledge base and practice skills grow. Thanks!
Used this attorney for an auto accident. Highly recommend this lawyer in St. Louis. Communicates well.
Response from the owner: Communicating with clients is essential. Taking the client though the car accident claims process is important otherwise major mistakes can occur. It is an effort that we make. Thanks!
Best for car accidents in St Louis. Use this attorney.
Response from the owner: Thanks. Great clients make for great cases!
This lawyer is great for car accident injury claims. Did an uninsured motorist case. Very good attorney.
Response from the owner: Car accidents can be insured or uninsured. The claims are much different. Thanks for the review.
Great lawyer if you are in an auto accident. I recommend this attorneys office.
Response from the owner: Thanks J. Glad we got your auto accident case completed and that for telling others about our lawyers.
Very good car accident attorney. Did my and my relatives claims and paperwork. Highly recommend.
Response from the owner: Thanks for recommending our law firm on car accident cases.
Fantastic law firm, I would recommend! Received free consultation related to an auto accident when my parked car was damaged by a baseball. Very supportive advice, these guys are good!
Response from the owner: Thank you!
Recommend this attorney for auto accidents.
Response from the owner: Thanks for recommending our attorneys for an automobile accident.
Best St Louis lawyer for car accidents.
Response from the owner: Thanks Tana. Appreciate this!
Great Lawyer!!
Response from the owner: Thank you
I was in a car accident in St.Louis and hired Chris as my lawyer. He was amazing!!! He helped me every step of the way and was able to get me a great settlement!!!Highly, highly, highly recommend him!
Response from the owner: Each step is important in a car accident. Thanks for recommending us for car accidents injury claims.
If you have an auto accident and need an attorney in St Louis, I recommend Mr Hoffmann.
Response from the owner: Appreciate this James and you did great as well. Car accident claims always start with a good client.
Great car accident lawyer. Did a very good job on my injury case. Thanks!
Response from the owner: Thanks. Appreciate the compliment. All we do is car accident litigation.
Very accomplished accident attorney in Saint Louis. 5 stars for sure!
Response from the owner: Thanks
A car accident lawyer I would recommend to anyone.
Response from the owner: Thanks. That is great of you to say about our lawyers.
Great car accident attorney!!
Response from the owner: Thanks
When I had my accident he was very professional, honest and caring to me and my family it wasn't about the money it was about the care, he made sure me and my kids were took care of and I really appreciate it this is a gexcellant law firm also his secretary is the best,so I would like to say thank you chris for everything melinda .
Response from the owner: Thank you
Great car accident lawyer in St. Louis. This is a very good car accident lawyer in St. Lious. Takes phone calls. Listens. Experienced in injury litigation.
Response from the owner: Thanks Maddie. Our law firm brings experience to the table on car accident cases.
Great people, helped me through a situation over the phone. His words and advice eventually helped me in my case.
Response from the owner: Glad to hear!
Although Mr. Hoffman did not represent me in my case he was willing to take the time to get me in touch with someone who specializes in the type of incident I needed legal representation with. Attorney's such as Mr. Hoffman are difficult to find. He took personal time to keep in touch with me and give me sound legal advice and guidance. I highly recommend speaking with Mr. Hoffman if you require his services. I truly believe he is the type of person who cares and will make sure the job gets done RIGHT. Do not hesitate to contact him
Response from the owner: Anytime!
In an auto accident in St. Louis, the other car pulled out and hit us. The collision was very bad. We were all injured and used this attorney. He is very experienced in handling injury claims and got a great settlement after filing a lawsuit for us. 5 Stars!
Response from the owner: Thanks Ms. Santoni. Side impact car accidents are some of the worst our lawyers see. We have to file lawsuits on nearly every case because insurance companies deny almost every claim, but I am glad we got yours resolved. I appreciate you recommending our lawyers and giving us a 5 Star rating.
My daughter and I were in an car accident. We for both injured badly. After I finally got out of the hospital, I started looking for lawyers in Saint Louis and found this attorney who does accident and injury claims. It said their attorney would answer 24 hours a day. I called their law firm at 10 p.m. and a injury lawyer answered. He was polite, knowledgeable, and advised me of what needed to be done for myself and my daughter regarding the car accident. I hired them to do or auto accident case. They kept me well informed during the car accident case in Saint Louis County Court. I was well prepared for depositions. He help with everything. I got a good settlement as did my daughter for our injuries. Although the car accident was scary, it was bearable having a good helpful attorney on our side. I highly recommend this Saint Louis car accident law firm. Their attorneys and lawyers are great. Highly recommended
Response from the owner: Happy to help.
The Chris Hoffman law firm takesgreat care of all my legal needs. They are caring and personal and will fight for what you need. I highly recommend them. You will be very satisfied and know he got you the best deal available.
Response from the owner: Great cleints are the start to pursuing any legal case and you are the best! Thanks for the recommendation Barbara!
A true professional in terms of car accident cases. I definitely recommend this lawyer for any injury after a St. Louis accident. Very good at what these attorneys do!
Response from the owner: Thank you very much for such a great review. Our attorneys work hard at providing great service. Car accident cases are fought by insurance companies from the property damage through the personal injury claim. This forces people to get local lawyers to do their claims. Missouri and Saint Louis, in particular, is known for accident claim denial even against your own insurance carrier. Thanks again!
You will not find better attorneys for a car accident in St. Louis. Very experienced. These attorneys know all the facets of an accident case and have great advice when problems come up during the injury claim.
Response from the owner: Thanks Jack. Our attorneys appreciate a great review like this. It helps car accident victims know who are the real lawyers in St. Louis who do this work versus the mere advertisers who refer victims to lawyers they have never met for a kickback. Much appreciated!
Thanks for helping with my car accident case. These lawyers are best in St. Louis.
Response from the owner: You are welcome and thanks for the review! A lot of car accident victims read these and find it helpful in choosing a lawyer for their case. Great cases always start with great clients!
great lawyer for auto accident cases . I thought this law firm did great work .Very happy with their services. I would recommend them to others.
Response from the owner: It was very nice of you to leave a review. Thanks Brenda! A good case always starts with a great client. We appreciated the recommendation. It is good to hear back from clients and have them refer us to other injury victims after a car accident. Wish you well!
This is the best choice for a car accident attorney. These lawyers get great settlements.I was recommended to them from some people I know and was happy to get a great recommendation.
Response from the owner: Our attorneys appreciate the compliment! It is great to hear we are doing well. It means a lot when you recommend our lawyers to other car accident victims. Thanks again!
Glad I switched to this auto accident lawyer. These lawyers fight hard for their injury clients. I highly recommend these lawyers.
Response from the owner: We are happy you switched as well. Good clients are the basis for a good case. Fighting to protect your rights after an accidental injury is our sole focus. Your recommendation means a lot. Thanks again for the review.
If you are injured in a car accident you should hire this attorney. This is the best legal representation. These attorneys are very professional.
Response from the owner: Thank you for reviewing our law firm and recommending our lawyers. Attorneys appreciate feedback on whether they are doing well on cases and reviews are one of the best means for this.
Response from the owner: Appreciate the Good Words! SInce our law firm started focusing exclusively on car and auto accidents, the focus had increased our knowledge and the learning curve has greatly benefited out settlement results. Specializing is key for any lawyers! All benefit from this. Thanks again for the review!

The Human Chest

The human chest comprises ribs, sternum, clavicle, lungs, chest wall, heart, esophagus, diaphragm, and major blood vessels. When a blunt force is applied to the body, it rarely damages only one anatomical component; often, other components are impacted as well.

Diagnosing Blunt Trauma Chest Injuries

There are various diagnostic techniques available to examine the car accident victim to determine the nature and severity of blunt force trauma chest injury. Physicians may use one or a combination of the following imaging tests to diagnose the injury:

  • X-rays
  • MRIs
  • CT-scans
  • Ultrasounds
  • Sonograms
  • Surgery

Even if there are no other visible injuries, a medical evaluation is necessary to rule out any chest injuries. If an X-ray shows any signs of injury, a CT scan may be performed. If a driver has sustained blunt force trauma to the front of the chest and he or she has a history of heart disease or is elderly, an EKG may be performed. If the tests are clear and the patient shows no obvious symptoms, he or she may be sent home and should be informed about the possibility of delayed symptoms such as light-headedness, severe chest pain, or breathing problems.

Cardiac Contusion

A blunt force trauma to the chest can cause a cardiac contusion. This injury is a possibility in case of a high-speed collision or rollover accident and is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • fracture of the sternum
  • history of heart disease
  • pain or tenderness over the mid-chest area
  • myocardial infarction

Although quite uncommon, blunt force trauma to the chest can cause myocardial infarction. It can result from a blood clot in a coronary artery or dissection of a coronary artery. The most commonly affected artery is the left anterior descending artery.

Myocardial Rupture

Severe blunt force injury to the heart may cause immediate death. If the patient survives, he or she may experience low blood pressure that can lead to rupture because any fluids given can increase blood pressure. Common signs of a serious heart injury include muffled heart sounds, distended veins in the neck, and low blood pressure.


If the rib is fractured as a result of blunt force trauma to the chest, it can lead to pneumothorax. Symptoms include chest pain, low oxygenation, absent breath sounds, and shortness of breath. Not all cases of pneumothorax are evident on X-rays, and silent pneumothorax can be seen only on a CT scan.

Pulmonary Contusion

Lung bruising may take up to 24 hours to manifest and usually disappears in a week. However, appropriate treatment is necessary to prevent pneumonia and to control pain.

Tracheobronchial Injury

This is a rare condition that affects only about one percent of patients who suffer blunt-force trauma to the chest. Unfortunately, in most cases, it causes immediate death.


Blunt force trauma to the chest can cause aortic rupture, rupture of the heart, or bleeding into the chest space, a condition known as hemothorax. Injury is often hard to diagnose and may not show on an X-ray. It can be seen on ultrasound.

Is Chest Pain After a Car Accident a Medical Emergency?

Chest pain after a car accident could signify a serious medical emergency. If you are having chest injury symptoms, make sure you seek medical attention immediately.

The sooner you get diagnostic tests and treatment, the sooner your doctor will diagnose and treat chest injuries before they turn into potentially life-threatening injuries or lead to disability. 

Seeking prompt medical attention also means early medical documentation. Getting your medical report as soon as possible helps you avoid problems with the insurance company and accelerate the timeline of your compensation claim.

Experiencing chest pain or any discomfort in the chest after an accident is not uncommon for car crash victims. There could be several reasons for chest pain after an auto accident, which, if ignored, can turn out to be a life-threatening issue.

Causes of Chest Pain or Discomfort After a Car Accident

Here are four of the most commonly known reasons car crash victims experience chest pain or discomfort: 

  • Bruised ribs: The seatbelt or airbag may have compressed your chest tightly during the accident, bruising the sternum or ribs. Common signs of bruised ribs are severe pain when breathing or coughing and swelling around the affected area.
  •  Fractured ribs: Another reason that can be triggering your chest pain is fractured ribs. A rib fracture can cause shortness of breath, which may result in pleural effusion, also known as “water on the lungs.” A fractured rib can also tear your chest wall, lungs, or blood vessels. If you have a fractured rib, you might feel severe pain around the chest area or sharp and stabbing pain when laughing, coughing, or sneezing.  
  • Internal organ injuries: The impact of a collision can cause life-threatening internal injuries such as lung or heart lacerations. Internal injuries can lead to severe chest pains or internal bleeding. 
  • Muscle strain: Seatbelt or airbag pressure can strain the chest muscles during a crash, resulting in chest pain or discomfort.

Treatment For Chest Injury from Car Accident

Treatment of these injuries depends upon the nature and severity of the injuries. A severe blunt force trauma to the chest can break the bones of the chest. Broken ribs can cause extreme pain and can make breathing difficult. Trauma can also cause bruising of the lungs, which can make breathing difficult and painful. Car accident victims who sustain blunt trauma to the chest can also suffer a broken sternum, which can cause severe secondary problems if it damages the heart or surrounding vessels.

Car accident victims can also sustain other injuries. A pneumothorax, or a collapsed lung, happens when air escapes from the lungs and enters the chest cavity. The air then applies pressure to the lungs, causing difficulty breathing. A collapsed lung is common after suffering blunt force trauma to the chest. To treat it, doctors typically insert a tube into the lung to re-inflate the collapsed lung.

Blunt trauma to the chest can also sheer or rupture blood vessels in the chest. This can cause blood to collect in the chest cavity or lungs, known as hemothorax. This can severely affect breathing. To restore breathing, the doctors have to eliminate the pooled blood.

If you have been injured in a car crash caused by another person’s negligence, consult a St. Louis car accident attorney for legal advice. Call The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. at (314) 361-4242.

Free Consultation with a St. Louis Car Accident Lawyer

Don’t talk to an insurance claims adjuster before speaking with The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. We can help you avoid making statements that may affect the outcome of your case. The consultation is free; you don’t pay unless we get you money!

Updated: June 11, 2024