Blunt Chest Trauma can Cause a Cardiac Contusion
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer. The heart is one of the most important organs in the body as it pumps oxygenated blood to the body’s organs and tissues as well as deoxygenated blood to the lungs. While the heart and lungs are protected by the bony rib cage, sometimes, this isn’t even protection to prevent serious damage. A recent research paper was published discussing a couple of case studies where trauma to the chest led to severe cardiac contusions and cardiogenic shock.
How does Blunt Trauma to the Chest Occur?
There are many ways that someone can sustain blunt trauma to the chest or abdomen and all of these modalities can lead to serious traumatic injuries. In recent years, injuries from sports such as football, soccer, and lacrosse are on the rise. People can also develop these injuries from falls from a great height; however, auto accidents continue to persist as one of the most common causes of cardiac contusions and other consequences of chest trauma. When someone is riding in a motor vehicle, it is important to wear a seatbelt at all times to protect against the sudden forces that arise during a car accident. When someone forgets or refuses to wear their seatbelt, their body could be thrown forward in the event of a sudden stop, such as that seen in a motor vehicle collision. When this happens, their chest can strike the steering wheel or dashboard, leading to severe chest trauma. This can lead to multiple rib fractures, which can damage the lungs or heart. It is this damage which leads to cardiac and pulmonary contusions. A recent case study was published demonstrating the severe consequences of cardiac damage in an auto accident.
Case Studies: Cardiogenic Shock
A team of medical professionals conducted a review of their cases and found some interesting information regarding the development of cardiac contusions following traumatic events. A middle-aged man was riding in a motor vehicle when his car collided with a pole located on the side of the road. Unfortunately, the individual was not wearing his seatbelt at the time. His upper chest struck the dashboard of the car and he collapsed inside the vehicle. Fortunately, EMS was called and quickly arrived on the scene. He was quickly transported to the hospital for further evaluation. An x-ray demonstrated multiple rib fractures and an EKG demonstrated that the individual was in severe cardiac distress. Bloodwork was completed which further supported that the individual had suffered a cardiac contusion. Unfortunately, the individual continued to decompensate. Further imaging demonstrated that one of the man’s ribs had actually punctured the protective sac of the heart, which was filling with fluid. This fluid was compressing the heart from the outside, inhibiting its ability to pump blood to the rest of the body. The doctors had to insert a needle into the man’s chest to drain the fluid from around the heart, allowing it to pump normally again.
Treatment of Blunt Chest Trauma
When it comes to the treatment of a cardiac contusion and cardiogenic shock, time is of the essence. It is important for someone to be evaluated by medical professionals quickly to ensure that fluid building around the heart is quickly diagnosed and treated. This means a rapid echocardiogram and, if necessary, using needle decompression to remove this fluid. It is not unusual for someone to have rib fractures with this type of an injury as well. If these are diagnosed, the person’s lungs will also be evaluated to ensure that the individual does not have a collapsed lung. After this, the patient will be monitored to ensure that they are recovering appropriately.
Seeking Help from a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer
When someone suffers severe trauma in a car accident, particularly to the heart, there are a number of issues which might arise. Sometimes, it can be helpful to speak with a legal professional to learn about the options. These circumstances include:
Seat Belt Liability: When is involved in an auto accident, victims expect their seatbelt to restrain them and protect their body from striking the dashboard. Sometimes, the seatbelt fails to do so. This product liability issue demands the attention of a legal professional.
Medical Care: For those who suffer a cardiac contusion, the treatment may be extremely expensive associated with lab work and imaging. These only become more severe if someone requires a trip to the operating room. How are these costs going to be paid for?
Negligence: If someone has suffered these injuries as a result of negligence on the part of another individual or company, those people should be held responsible. A legal professional can help make this happen.
It is easy to feel alone and overwhelmed after suffering a serious injury. These ancillary issues only add to an already stressful situation. Allow a professional legal advocate to take the stress of these issues away, allowing the family to focus on their medical recovery.
Experienced Sacramento Personal Injury Attorney
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer. A cardiac contusion can be a major problem and those who have developed one may contact our team for advice without obligation at (916) 921-6400 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400. You will receive free, friendly advise.
The California area’s section of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum has invited me to join its ranks. The trial lawyers in the chapter have been listed with the top legal professionals in the United States. Members of our group have helped to win verdicts and assisted in settlement negotiations worth greater than $1 Million.
The majority of my verdicts and settlements are maintained here.
Image License: The image above was located on Wikimedia Commons and has been printed here under the 4.0 version of the Creative Commons License.
Final Photo: Edward A Smith, Personal Injury Attorney Sacramento
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