If you experience any chest pain after a car accident, it can be an indication of serious injury, even if you are not feeling severe pain. These are some of the common chest injuries as a result of being in an auto accident:
- Fractured ribs
- Bruised ribs
- Muscle strain
- Fractured sternum
- Ruptured diaphragm
If you suspect you have chest injuries caused by a car accident, get checked out by a doctor because there could be underlying issues like internal bleeding, torn cartilage, or organ damage even after the chest pain subsides.
Car Accident Statistics in Texas, Tarrant County, and Fort Worth
According to the National Safety Council, nearly 4.6 million people required medical attention after car accidents nationwide last year, which was a 7% increase over 2015. Here is a breakdown of local car accidents, according to the Texas Department of Transportation:
Texas Accident Injury Statistics for 2016
|Unknown severity injuries||2,955||6,228||84,576|
Courtesy of the Texas Department of Transportation
Seat Belt Injuries Are Very Common
Seat belts save lives in a car accident, but they can also cause chest injuries. During a collision, the seat belt restrains the vehicle’s occupants from moving around, leading to abrasions, bruising, fractures to the sternum, and internal injuries. If you suspect a seat belt is the cause of your pain, see a doctor immediately to look for underlying injuries.
After a car accident, the early symptoms of seat belt injuries are bruising and a sensation of tenderness where the seat belt made contact with the chest. In a more violent crash, there will be visible seat belt marks across the chest and abdomen, indicating serious or fatal internal injuries.
Don’t Overlook Minor Chest Pain After A Car Accident
Here is what happens when you have a minor chest injury resulting from a car accident: When you move your shoulder, arms or torso, you may feel pain in your chest wall. Likewise, you may experience chest pain when you sneeze, cough, breathe deeply or lie on your stomach. Even if you don’t think your chest pain is serious and you experience only slight soreness in the area, see a doctor to be sure your injuries are not more serious than you suspect.
Symptoms Of A Major Chest Injury
If you have trouble breathing or you are having severe pain after a car accident, you may have damaged your lungs or heart in the crash or ruptured important blood vessels. Remember that the impact on your sternum can bring on sudden shortness of breath, as well as leave you in a state of shock and disorientation. Your lungs and trachea may also be injured when the front of your chest is impacted; when the brunt of the blunt force is absorbed by your lower chest, you should be examined for liver and spleen injuries. Here are some excellent Tarrant County sources for seeking medical attention if you were involved in a car accident and you believe you’ve suffered chest injuries:
Texas Health Specialty Hospital
1301 Pennsylvania Ave
Fort Worth, Texas 76104
Healthsouth Rehabilitation Hospital
1212 W Lancaster Ave
Fort Worth, Texas 76102
Broken Ribs as a Result of an Accident
Fractured (broken) ribs are a common result of car accidents and seat belt injuries, and the driver faces even more danger because the chest will hit the steering wheel during a collision. If you have a broken rib, you’ll know it by the excruciating sharp, shooting pain in your chest.
If you injured your sternum, sometimes called the breastbone, you can expect to feel severe pain at the impact site and extreme tenderness in the surrounding areas. Be advised that a sternal fracture requires immediate attention because it indicates possible rib fractures and internal injuries, and because an injured sternum affects your spinal cord.
Other injuries associated with a car accident include:
- Bruising: A moderate impact can cause a bruised sternum or ribs, characterized by dull aches and pains that affect you periodically.
- Straining: You may feel your chest muscles strain when you breathe after a car accident, which is understandable, but it doesn’t mean you can forgo X-rays and medical tests.
- Internal Injuries: If you suffer chest pains following a car accident, you could be looking at life-threatening injuries like a heart attack or grave internal injuries. Dizziness, blinding headaches, dizziness and shortness of breath, are all reasons to see an internal specialist as soon as possible
What To Do After You’ve Been In A Car Accident In Texas
After a car accident, you should seek medical help if you suffer a chest injury, whether it was caused by the seatbelt, steering wheel, or dashboard. But you need to find legal help just as quickly, and a reputable law firm like Patterson Law Group will help you obtain the best medical care, as well as the best legal representation. Your monetary compensation will depend on the extent and severity of your chest injuries, your medical bills, and any loss of income due to the accident.
Patterson Law Group has the experience to make sure you get fair compensation for your injuries. When you work with us, you’re more than just a case number. We care about earning you the justice you deserve and we take great pride in our results. Call today for a free appointment and let Patterson Law Group help you get back on your feet.