Seattle Internal Organ Damage Attorneys
If you were in a serious car accident that resulted in internal organ damage, you are likely suffering from pain, as well as facing mounting medical bills and lost wages. You may be entitled to serious compensation, and The Law Offices of Jeffrey R. Caffee can help.
In a collision, the physical impact on the vehicle’s driver and passengers is immense, especially if the crash happens at high speed. If occupants are not wearing seatbelts, they can be propelled against the steering wheel, dashboard, and windshield, or even be tossed out of the vehicle. Injuries still happen even when occupants are wearing seatbelts, as they are forcibly restrained against the belt. When the body endures this type of force, a variety of injuries can occur, including internal organ damage.
Damage to internal organs is a serious medical condition that must be treated immediately. You will also need ongoing care to avoid severe complications such as internal bleeding, organ failure, and even death.
If you or someone you love has sustained injuries to an internal organ in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, you need an experienced attorney to pursue your claim for damages and hold the responsible parties accountable. Call The Law Offices of Jeffrey R. Caffee today at (206) 899-5415. We’re ready to start working on your case.
Common Types of Organ Damage from Car Accidents
Any substantial injury to the abdominal area could result in some type of organ damage. Organs located in the abdominal area are especially vulnerable to trauma because the abdomen is a relatively unprotected area of the body. The abdomen depends only on soft tissue for protection and has no bony structural defense. Many of the vital organ systems are housed in the abdominal area and are therefore susceptible to many types of injuries during a car accident. These three organs are the most commonly damaged in car accidents:
Liver: The liver is the body’s largest internal organ, and its purpose is to work with the gallbladder, pancreas, and intestines to absorb, digest, and process food. The liver filters blood coming from the digestive tract and then passes it on to the rest of the body. This filtering includes detoxifying chemicals and metabolizing drugs, and the liver secretes the toxins that go to the intestines. Another function of the liver is to make proteins used in blood clotting and other vital bodily functions.
Liver injuries can be minor and easily treated, but any damage to the liver can be very serious because of its essential functions within the body and its potential to hemorrhage. Symptoms of liver damage include:
- Pain in the upper right region of the abdomen
- Distended abdomen
- Rapid heart rate
- Low blood pressure
- Blood in vomit, feces, or urine
Kidneys: There are two kidneys in the human body. Each is about the size of a fist, and they are located just below the rib cage on either side of the spine. Kidneys serve as filters for blood to remove waste and excess fluid. They also remove acid to maintain a healthy balance of water, salts, and minerals in the blood. Nerves, muscles, and other tissues may not work properly if this balance is not maintained. Kidneys also make hormones that serve in controlling blood pressure, making red blood cells, and keeping bones strong.
When the force of a car accident delivers a blow to a person’s lower back, a kidney can be bruised, torn, or rupture. Kidney damage symptoms include:
- Blood in urine
- Abdominal pain or tenderness
- Back pain
Spleen: The spleen is located in the upper far left of the abdomen near the stomach, and it filters blood as part of the immune system. Spleens vary in size and shape, but it’s typically fist-shaped and around four inches long. The spleen recycles red blood cells and stores platelets and white blood cells. It also helps fight certain types of bacteria, including the kind that causes meningitis and pneumonia.
The spleen can rupture or be perforated during a car accident and lead to serious internal bleeding. Sometimes the spleen will not rupture until days or weeks after the accident happens. These are typical symptoms of a damaged spleen:
- Internal bleeding
- Clammy, cool, pale skin
- Weak, rapid pulse
It’s critical that you seek medical attention immediately following a car accident, as it may not be immediately evident that you have suffered an injury to an organ. A physician can help to identify injuries that you may not even be aware of.
Treatment for Internal Organ Damage
Even a minor bruise to an internal organ requires medical attention at a hospital. The medical staff will want to confirm that there is damage and see how bad it is with an imaging test, such as a CT scan or ultrasound. You may also have the following treatments while you are there:
- Close monitoring by medical professionals
- Rest and intravenous fluids
- Tests for complications and other injuries
At the very least, you will need to rest at home and stop certain activities until the organ heals. Significant injuries can require more intensive treatment such as a blood transfusion, surgery, or procedures to drain excess fluids or find and stop the source of bleeding.
Complications from Internal Organ Damage
Organ trauma can be deceiving because sometimes the severity is not immediately obvious. Internal bleeding can occur slowly for days or even weeks before organ malfunction or failure is revealed. Organ failure can be life-threatening and requires immediate medical attention.
When the kidneys are seriously damaged and can’t function correctly, it may be necessary to have dialysis. Other complications include urine leakage, infections, anemia, and blood pressure issues.
If a spleen is severely harmed, you can have surgery to remove it. Living without a spleen is not unusual, but it can compromise the immune system and increase the potential for dangerous infections.
Getting Compensation for Internal Organ Damage from Car Accidents
If you have suffered internal organ damage due to a car accident, you may be eligible to receive compensation. The Law Offices of Jeffrey R. Caffee has represented numerous Seattle accident victims and recovered the compensation they were owed from those responsible. We have experience dealing with insurance companies to gain fair settlements for our clients, and we can help you recover damages for current and future medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Call (206) 899-5415 today and speak to an experienced car accident attorney at The Law Offices of Jeffrey R. Caffee. We can schedule a free consultation to review your case and the reimbursement you deserve.