A person involved in an automobile accident can experience various knee injuries, ranging from cuts and bruises to ligament and soft tissue tears. Some knee injury accidents may require long-term treatment, like surgery, physical therapy, or prescription pain management.
The sudden impact of a collision can cause immediate pain and might lead to a lifetime of recovery. Below are some common knee injuries that car accident victims can sustain.
Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) Injury
An ACL injury is a strain or tear of the anterior cruciate ligament, which helps connect your femur to your tibia. This type of injury often occurs in athletes and results from landing hard after jumping or falling from a height.
People who have torn or injured their ACL often hear a loud popping sound at the time of the accident. Depending on the severity of the injury, the doctor may recommend immediate surgery. Therefore, it is critical to get checked out by a medical professional immediately.
A meniscus tear affects the knee cartilage, which offers a cushion between the shinbone and the thigh bone. The injury often happens when the knee is twisted or rotated out of alignment.
Symptoms of a meniscus injury include pain, swelling, and trouble lengthening the knee are symptoms. A healthy meniscus provides support and stability to the knee when in motion. Often corrective surgery is required to correct this type of injury.
Posterior Cruciate Ligament (PCL) Injury
The posterior cruciate ligament connects the top and bottom of the leg at the back of the knee; it is a counterpoint to the ACL. Notably, ligament injury occurs most often in car accidents and is called "dashboard knee" because it happens when an occupant slams into the car's dashboard.
Pain and swelling are the most common symptoms of this injury, and treatment can be both invasive and long-lasting.
Outcomes After a Knee Injury Accident
The severity of a knee injury depends on various factors like age and physical condition. While some superficial wounds can heal after time with proper medical care, some injuries result in the need for long-term rehabilitation and pain management.
Initially, doctors will require patients with knee injuries to rest, ice, compress and elevate their leg and knee. Still, if you are experiencing stability issues or having trouble walking, your doctor will likely call for tests to determine the exact injury.
Unfortunately, many knee injuries result in surgery. It is advisable to contact a care provider after suffering a knee injury accident for a thorough workup.
Long Term Effects
Osteoarthritis affects joints years after an injury when bone fractures or cartilage disruption interfere with the knee's functioning ability. Suppose a person is involved in a car accident. In that case, multiple injuries are likely sustained, and a knee injury can be overlooked if more severe conditions, like a back or head injury, are being immediately treated.
As you recover from injuries sustained in a car accident, be sure to ask your doctor about knee injuries and any long-term effects that might be associated.
Elements of Knee Injuries
Several components make up the knee, including the femur, tibia, fibula, and patella. Muscles, tendons, and ligaments connect to the bones surrounding the knee and provide balance and flexibility.
Within the knee, the meniscus protects the topmost point of the tibia and functions to absorb shock. Finally, the knee is surrounded by fluid-filled sacs that cushion the knee as it moves. Each piece must properly work together for the knee to effectively serve you. Trauma can cause severe damage that can impact a person forever.
Knee injuries that result from car accidents can be severe. The ramifications of injury from a car accident can be loss of wages, loss of employment, and decreased future earning capacity. Additionally, it might take years to recover fully. Knee injuries sustained during a car accident can impact your life in unbeknownst ways.
Help After a Car Accident
If you have been in a car accident, seek immediate medical attention. Knee injury accident symptoms are often not immediately apparent, so be sure to ask your doctor or healthcare provider to examine your knees as soon as you feel symptoms.
Furthermore, it is essential to document the date of the accident and the times that symptoms begin to occur. If you begin experiencing knee pain two weeks after an accident, take detailed notes for yourself to remember all of the signs and when they occurred so that you can tell your doctor all of the details.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident due to someone else’s negligence or recklessness, the car accident lawyers of Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, can help. Our experienced attorney team has recovered millions of dollars in damages for accident victims. Contact us today for a free legal consultation.