Crush Injuries Can Lead to Even Worse Conditions
Crush injuries involve compression of the extremities, which causes swelling of the muscles or neurological disturbances, or both. These injuries occur when force or pressure is put on a body part.
Crush injuries are often sustained when part of the body is squeezed between two heavy objects. This can happen on construction sites, in motor vehicle accidents, and all types of industrial accidents.
After a compression injury, a painful condition known as compartment syndrome may develop. This condition occurs when pressure within the muscles begins to build to dangerous levels. It is usually caused by post-injury bleeding or swelling. Dangerously high pressure impedes blood flow to affected tissues, and may require surgery to prevent permanent injury.
How Does Compartment Syndrome Develop after Crush Injuries?
The legs, arms, and abdomen are the areas of the body most prone to developing compartment syndrome. Groups of muscles are organized into compartments, with strong webs of connective tissue forming their walls. After crush injuries, blood or fluid resulting from inflammation can accumulate in a compartment. As the tough walls of connective tissue surrounding the compartment cannot easily expand, pressure in the compartment rises, preventing adequate blood flow to and from the tissues.
Acute compartment syndrome is a medical emergency. Unless the pressure is quickly relieved, it can result in tissue death and permanent disability. Besides crush injuries, other conditions and injuries that can lead to compartment syndrome include:
- Badly bruised muscles (as when a motorcycle falls on the leg of a rider)
- Blood flow reestablished after circulation is blocked (as when a previously blocked blood vessel is repaired in surgery, or when an intoxicated person blocks blood flow to a limb during sleep)
- Tight, constricting casts and bandages
- Blood clots in blood vessels in the arms or legs
How Is Compartment Syndrome Treated?
Acute compartment syndrome is treated with emergency surgery. The surgeon makes an incision and opens the skin and connective tissue covering the affected compartment, known as the fascia. The surgical procedure to treat compartment syndrome is known as a fasciotomy.
If the swelling is severe, the incision may not be closed immediately. The incision may need to be surgically repaired when the swelling subsides. In some cases, this repair may involve a skin graft.
Compensation for Crush Injuries Leading to Compartment Syndrome
If you have suffered crush injuries through someone else’s negligence, and those injuries led to compartment syndrome, it is in your best interests to speak with an experienced Texas personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. You may be entitled to recover compensation for your losses. Call The Sorey Law Firm P.L.L.C. at (903) 207-5526 to find out about your options under the law.