If you’ve been hurt in a severe car accident, natural disaster, or structural collapse, it’s possible you may have sustained a crush injury. These types of traumatic injuries are very serious, require immediate medical attention, and can often times be life threatening. 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 are Crush Injuries?
Any traumatic event in which any part of the body is compressed between two objects can result in a crush injury. Example of this include someone pinned between two vehicles after a collision, or being pinned under a heavy object that has fallen. Crush injuries can occur in any part of the body, and while some areas are more life threatening than others, a crush injury to any part of the body could eventually be fatal if not treated properly.
How do Crush Injuries Happen?
A crush injury can happen in an instant with little to no warning at all. They can be caused by any object or objects inflicting a large compression force on any part of the body. The most common causes of compression injuries are:
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- Car accidents – Getting pinned within or under a vehicle, between two vehicles, or between a vehicle and a solid structure.
- Accidents involving heavy machinery – Large construction, manufacturing, and farming equipment can inflict massive amounts of force, and often cause very serious, and sometimes fatal injuries if not safely used or properly maintained.
- Natural Disasters – Earth quakes, flash floods, tornadoes, and tidal waves, have all brought down buildings and structures, causing massive spikes in the rate of crush injuries in the areas they affect.
- Terrorist Attacks – Explosions during events like the Oklahoma City bombing, or the World Trade Center, where buildings are destroyed and collapse,
What are Symptoms and Risks Related to Crush Injuries?
Because crush injuries can happen to any part of the body, many symptoms and risks will be dependent on which area was injured. Even so, many common traits can be found, regardless of the location of the injury. These common types of damage include:
- Bone fractures
- Nerve damage
Other risks are going to be isolated to certain parts of the body. Limbs or extremities might suffer compartment syndrome, where pressure may build up due to damaged tissue or blood vessels, constricting the normal flow of bodily fluids.
Even in situations where only limb injuries have been sustained, internal organs may be at risk, also. Rhabdomyolysis is condition often associated with crush injuries, and is a results of damaged muscle tissue breaking down rapidly and releasing the biological byproducts into the blood stream. Some of these byproducts, like myoglobin, are harmful to the kidneys, and in large enough quantities may cause kidney failure.
How are Crush Injuries Treated?
Due to the nature of how crush injuries are sustained, immediate emergency medical attention is almost always necessary. Until proper medical attention is available, there are some steps that can be taken in the meantime.
- Stop any bleeding by applying direct pressure.
- Cover wounds with clothes or bandages, and raise them above heart level.
- In the event of head, neck, or spinal injuries, attempt to immobilize the victim as much as possible, treating only the crushed limb.
- If the victim has been pinned for more than 15 minutes, it is advised NOT to try to free them. The nature of crush injuries means that blood vessel or muscle damage may be ongoing at this point, and removing the crushing object without expert medical supervision can exacerbate the problem.
If you or a loved one has suffered a crush 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.