Recognizing the Symptoms of Compartment Syndrome in a Car Accident

Unfortunately, motor vehicle accidents are fairly common on America’s roadways, including in Tennessee. Car crashes can occur because of a variety of reasons, including inclement weather, poor road conditions, construction zones, and impaired or reckless drivers. Injuries that passengers suffer may be minor, such as scratches, bumps, and bruises. However, in some cases, they can be serious or even fatal. Even if drivers and vehicle occupants do not think they are severely hurt, they should seek medical attention to prevent further or permanent damage. Compartment syndrome is an injury that may be difficult to detect immediately, but a personal injury claim can provide needed compensation to someone suffering from it. 

Signs of Injury 

Compartment syndrome is a medical condition that involves increased pressure that typically occurs within the leg or arm muscles. The different groups of muscles, nerves, and blood vessels, known as compartments, in the arms and legs can swell after a person is in a collision. If fascia, which is the tissue that protects the compartments, is not allowed to expand, any swelling or bleeding in a compartment can cause extra pressure in that area. This pressure may then prevent blood flow to the muscles and nerves within the compartment, resulting in significant pain.

Although a broken leg can be readily apparent, it can lead to other leg injuries that may be harder to distinguish or diagnose. If left untreated, they can lead to extensive damage, which can result in losing the ability to walk. Accident victims who are in a lot of pain may be suffering from compartment syndrome. A few of the most common signs and symptoms of this syndrome can include: 

  • Increased pain
  • Decreased muscle sensation
  • Loss of color in the skin
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Overall weakness
  • Muscle tightness

Acute Versus Chronic

Acute compartment syndrome often develops after a significant injury. Broken or fractured bones, severely bruised muscles, and crush injuries are all potential causes of the acute syndrome. Restored blood flow in a vessel that was previously blocked can also cause it, and extreme cases lead to permanent disability or death if not treated promptly. Chronic compartment syndrome may occur from exercise or sports, and also activities such as running and swimming since they require repetitive motions. Simply stopping that type of exercise usually alleviates the condition. 

Contact a Chattanooga Personal Injury Lawyer

Being involved in an auto accident can be traumatizing. Physical and psychological effects can be long-lasting. If you or your loved one is suffering from compartment syndrome after a crash, a negligent party may be liable. The experienced legal team at Warren & Griffin, P.C. know how important seeking compensation for damages can be for those hurt in order to alleviate the financial hardship it can cause if you cannot return to work. Our knowledgeable Tennessee personal injury attorneys have proven success in obtaining fair compensation for accident victims. Call us today at 423-265-4878 to arrange a confidential consultation. We are available 24/7.