Although there are a number of different types of injuries from which car accident victims can suffer, there are a few that tend to crop up again and again in vehicle collisions. Of these injuries, which include lacerations and concussions, broken bones are amongst the most common and painful that a person can sustain. Fortunately, those who suffer broken or fractured bones in car accidents can often seek damages from the at-fault party who caused the crash, compensating them for related expenses, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Types of Fractures
Although bones are rigid, they are somewhat flexible and so can bend when forced to absorb outside force. If, however, that force becomes too great, a bone will no longer be able to remain rigid, but will break, or fracture. Generally, the severity of a person’s fracture depends on the amount of force that caused the break. If, for instance, a bone’s breaking point was only slightly exceeded, then the bone could crack rather than break all the way through. The force of impact in car accidents tends to be extreme, so it is not uncommon for vehicle occupants to suffer complete or partial fractures as a result. These fractures almost always fall under one of the following categories:
- Stable fractures, in which the broken ends of a bone are only slightly out of place;
- Transverse fractures, which involve horizontal breaks;
- Oblique fractures, which have an angled break pattern;
- Comminuted fractures, in which the bone actually shatters into multiple pieces; and
- Open, or compound fractures, which occur when the pieces of a broken bone pierce the skin.
Of these fractures, compound fractures are considered to be the most severe, as they involve not only extreme breaks, but also an increased risk of infection due to the presence of an open wound.
Common Forms of Treatment
The treatment of fractures depends on the type of break in question, which is determined through a physical examination and an x-ray. Once the exact location for the break has been determined, an injured party will usually be fitted with a rigid plaster or fiberglass cast, or a functional brace. In serious cases, patients may require surgical intervention where metal pins and screws are placed above and below the fracture site and then connected to a metal bar outside of the skin. Known as external fixation, this method ensures that there is no movement of the broken bone during the healing process and is often utilized with compound fractures. Alternatively, an injured party could undergo internal fixation, which involves repositioning the bone fragments in their normal alignment and then holding those pieces together with metal plates and screws.
Call a Dedicated Car Accident Lawyer in Charlotte County
Whatever the form of treatment, an injured party suffering from a broken bone can expect to experience significant pain and be saddled with potentially expensive medical bills. To learn more about seeking compensation for these costs from the at-fault party who caused your own crash, please contact dedicated Charlotte County car accident attorney Herbert E. Maxey, Jr. at 434-969-4873 today.