If you’re experiencing chest pain, irregular heart beat, or difficulty breathing after a traumatic incident, you may have suffered chest trauma. It’s recommended to have any of these symptoms assessed and diagnosed by your doctor immediately. If you’re in Los Angeles or southern California, contact us today at 1-800-824-5416 and we’ll help you takes the steps needed to bring those responsible to justice, cover expensive medical treatments, and make sure your rights are protected.
What is Chest Trauma?
Sometimes referred to as a general chest injury, chest trauma is any serious injury affecting any organ, bone, or tissue within the chest cavity. This includes, but is not limited to broken ribs (including flail chest), collapsed or bruised lungs, internal bleeding, fractured sternum, or fractured collar bone. Chest trauma is the leading cause of death, hospitalization, and disability for all Americans under the age of 50. It is estimated that more than 125 thousand people die from chest injuries each year.
What Causes Chest Trauma?
By a large majority, especiall in Los Angeles, California, most chest trauma cases are cause by sudden and forceful impacts, typically car accidents. Other possible causes include sports injuries, falls from a great height, or assault. Any impact forceful enough to break ribs is also capable of damaging internal organs. The severity of the injury and risk of death will depend on the force of impact, and the bones and organs affected.
What are Symptoms of Chest Trauma?
The symptoms of chest trauma will vary based on the specific injury sustained. As chest trauma is not something that occurs without a sudden impact, fall, or forceful collision, there will likely be great amounts of pain involved. Other possible symptoms may be difficulty breather or shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, or even unconsciousness.
How is Chest Trauma Diagnosed?
Since chest trauma includes such a wide range of specific injuries, many different diagnostic tools and methods may be used to detect them. A general physical examination, a discussion of symptoms, x-rays, MRI scans, and possibly even exploratory surgery may be required for a full and proper diagnosis. Some of these injuries are going to be easier to test for, such as broken bones. Other will be more difficult, like internal bleeding.
How is Chest Trauma Treated?
Treatment will greatly depend on the type of injury sustained during the trauma. Unlike limb fractures, its difficult, and sometimes impossible, to brace and stabilize broken bones in the chest, such as ribs. It’s common for broken ribs to be treated with nothing more than bandage wraps, pain medication, and rest.
For situations involving internal bleeding, such as a hemothorax, where blood pools inside the chest cavity, limiting the expansion of the lungs, a chest tube can be inserted in order to drain the blood and relieve pressure. This will help the patient breath normally, but does not stop the source of the bleeding. Despite the seriousness of these types of injuries, it’s likely that a full recovery is possible.
If you or a loved one has suffered a chest trauma injury as a result of someone’s negligence and would like to discuss your legal options with an experienced Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney, contact us today for a free consultation. We have offices in Encino, Los Angeles, and every city listed at the bottom of this page.