Where do Maxillofacial Fractures Come From?
I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer. In the world of bone fractures, there are many different types which can range widely in their severity. One of the most severe that someone can experience is a fracture of the facial bones. Often termed a maxillofacial fracture, there are many different ways that someone can break these bones. Recently, a research paper was published that helped to shed light on how and why these fractures develop in some people more often than others.
What are the Symptoms of a Facial Fracture?
Bone fractures are a common type of traumatic injury that can be seen in different accidents, including bicycle accidents and pedestrian injuries. Someone who has suffered facial fractures can expect to have a variety of symptoms indicative of this injury, including:
Pain: This is a universal symptom of all bone fractures. Pain is typically at the fracture site; however, the pain can also radiate to other areas of the body if there has been damage to nerves that run through these areas. In some cases, the pain can be quite severe, particularly with open or compound fractures.
Swelling: In response to an injury, the body often mobilizes cells to the site to try and start the healing process. When all of these cells start flowing to the site of the injury, the location can begin to swell. In order to keep this swelling at bay, it can be helpful to use some anti-inflammatory medications (such as ibuprofen) and apply ice to that location.
Difficulty Speaking: When it comes to facial fractures, the patient may have trouble speaking. This is because the facial fractures can make it hard to move the mouth in to form syllables. Sometimes, this is due to pain. Other times, it could be due to direct damage to the bones themselves.
Difficulty Eating: Going with trouble speaking, it might be challenging to chew and swallow as well. This can be particularly true with damage to the hard palate in the roof of the mouth. A fracture in this location can make it almost impossible to eat.
These are only a few of the many different symptoms that someone might experience with fractures of the facial region. The symptoms often vary with the mechanism of this injury, which were explored in a study that was recently published.
The Methods of the Research Study
The researchers started by taking a look at what they knew about facial fractures. Facial fracture trauma can vary in its etiology across various countries and even regions within the same country. The injuries are also heavily dependent on the cultural and socioeconomic factors of the area. They conducted an extensive review of the electronic literature on facial fractures from all different countries between 1980 and 2013. In the end, they found 69 studies that had taken place from all over the world. The studies came from Africa, North America, South America, Asia, Europe, and Oceania. Once they had the studies put together, they compiled the results and conducted numerous statistical analyses to quantify the trends that they noticed.
The Study Results
In the studies, they found that men outnumbered women in terms of facial trauma by almost two to one. In the studies out of the Americas, Africa, and Asia, auto accidents were by far the most common reason that someone suffered facial trauma. In an auto or truck accident, when someone strikes another object, their face moves forward at high speed even though their body is restrained by a seatbelt. This direct contact of the face with the steering wheel or dashboard is what leads to this severe injury. In Europe, the etiology was more varied. While traffic collisions were still a common reason for the injury, assaults were also common reasons. Oceania’s studies had assaults as the most common reason as well. Blunt or penetrating trauma can easily lead to facial injuries.
Future Directions: Moving Forward with Prevention
Once the etiology of facial trauma has been established, the next step is to prevent the injuries from happening. This requires a complete, working knowledge of the various factors involved in assaults and traffic accidents. This means seat belts for drivers, helmets for people riding motorcycles, proper protection during sports, and speed limits that are appropriate for the road. If someone does experience facial trauma, this can lead to some extensive surgical operations that require large medical bills. This kind of stress can be tough for anyone to handle. For this reason, individuals suffering facial fractures and other injuries should consider contacting an experienced legal professional. They can help with the insurance claims, complete paperwork, and help individuals deal with any legal situation that might come up. Don’t try and navigate these waters without an experienced guide.
Contact an Experienced Sacramento Personal Injury Lawyer
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Image Source: Used via the 3.0 License of the Creative Commons directive, this image was found first on Wikimedia Commons.
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