Being crushed between heavy objects or against an unyielding surface is naturally terrifying, and the associated injuries can be extremely severe. Crush accidents are most common in jobs that require heavy manual labor, such as construction work and factory work, but nearly any kind of job can lead to a crush accident. If you have sustained injuries in a work-related accident, you should call a Killeen personal injury lawyer as soon as you can.
Associated Signs and Symptoms
The U.S. National Library of Medicine shares that crush accidents typically involve a body part being caught and subsequently squeezed between two heavy objects, such as machinery. Even if the victim believes himself or herself to be physically unharmed by the accident, seeking immediate medical attention is strongly advised. Many crush injuries require emergency medical care, and these serious injuries often require surgery. Crush injuries have a variety of associated symptoms that include:
- Bone fractures
- Significant bleeding and bruising
- Lacerations and other types of open wounds
- Injuries to the nerves
- Wound infections
- Smashed hands and/or feet
Crush accidents are so significant that they can lead to a set of medical signs and symptoms that are known as syndromes. Crush injuries have two associated syndromes, including:
- Crush Syndrome – When a body part is crushed, the muscles and tissues in the crushed region can begin to deteriorate and die if they do not receive prompt medical attention. As these muscles and tissues deteriorate, they can release toxic chemical byproducts that build up behind the injury-causing pressure. When the pressure is ultimately released, the toxins can flood the victim’s bloodstream and lead to kidney failure and shock. This is crush syndrome, and it attests to exactly how dangerous crush accidents can be – even the act of relieving the crushing pressure can be life-threatening.
- Compartment Syndrome – Compartment syndrome is unique to crushing accidents, and it is an extremely serious condition. When blood flow to a specific body part is halted by a crushing injury, the muscles and tissues in the affected region can die (or be seriously damaged) if medical intervention is not swift. Surgery is typically necessary to decrease the pressure. Compartment syndrome can cause permanent muscle damage and can even lead to amputation of the affected limb. The external signs of compartment syndrome can include swelling, pale and shiny skin, numbness, severe pain, and/or weakness in the affected area.
The health risks associated with either of these syndromes are vast.