5 Common Causes of Car Accident Chest Injuries

5 Common Causes of Car Accident Chest Injuries

Some of the most serious auto accident injuries are invisible to the naked eye. Unlike bruises and cuts, some severe injuries, such as rib fractures or lung contusions, may need a medical evaluation to be discovered.

You should never ignore chest pain or discomfort following a car accident. Although you may attribute chest pain following a car accident to bruising from the force of impact, it may also indicate a much more serious injury. 

If you get injured in a car crash, you can rely on auto accident specialist Robert Mitchell, MD, and our team at Tulsa Accident Care Center to provide exceptional care in evaluating and treating your injuries. 

Chest injuries are common in car accidents, and left untreated, they can result in serious health complications. Our state-of-the-art center is equipped to perform advanced imaging to quickly and effectively diagnose your injury. Our team of physicians, nurses, and imaging technicians adhere to the highest possible standards and provide support every step of the way. 

Understanding chest pain after a car accident

The rapid deceleration of a vehicle during an accident can propel the body of a driver or passenger into the steering wheel, dashboard, or seatbelt, and the force of impact can also cause airbags to deploy. The force of impact from any of these situations can cause minor to severe chest injuries. 

Shortness of breath or chest pain are common symptoms of a chest injury following a car accident. 

Common causes of chest pain following a car accident

Many types of car accidents, whether rear-end collisions, T-bone collisions, or head-on collisions, can cause chest injuries. Take a look at the most common chest injuries sustained in a car accident.

1. Bruising

Bruises from car accidents are most commonly associated with a sudden impact caused by the body slamming against vehicle structures, such as the dashboard. Bruises, also known as contusions, occur when small veins and blood vessels beneath the skin rupture due to the force of impact.

Bruises can range from dull pains to intermittent chest pains, and they’re generally considered minor soft tissue injuries. However, if the bruises don’t improve, or if they worsen, the area should be examined to evaluate the extent of the damage.

2. Injury from airbags

Airbags save many lives each year, but they can also cause injuries. Airbags deploy rapidly and with force. It’s possible to sustain chest injuries if you’re too close to the steering wheel or dashboard, or if you come into contact with the airbag.

3. Strained muscle

A pulled muscle occurs when the muscle fibers become overstretched or torn. The force of a car accident can cause muscle tissue in your chest to be pulled or twisted, which can result in painful tears. Pectoral pain after a car accident is often attributed to a strain. However, severe pain should always be evaluated by a medical professional.

4. Injury from a seat belt

Seat belts save thousands of lives each year. When a seat belt detects an accident, it tightens quickly, causing your body to ricochet back into your seat. This sudden force can injure the chest wall.

Injuries sustained from a seat belt can include the following:

Seatbelts can also injure other parts of the body, such as the stomach and internal organs, and the force and speed of impact can result in neck, back, and hip injuries.

5. Internal injuries

If your chest receives a direct impact, internal organs could get injured, such as your lungs or esophagus. Furthermore, your ribs, large blood vessels, and other parts of the chest area could get injured.

Even if you don’t experience immediate chest pain following an accident, pain can develop later, which could indicate an internal injury. If you get in an auto accident, you should get examined, and this is especially true if you have chest pain or shortness of breath. 

Have you been in an auto accident? If so, get the care you need by calling 918-372-3694 or booking an appointment online with Tulsa Accident Care Center today.

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