It is not uncommon for victims of car crashes to not realize they have suffered an injury. Symptoms of car accident injuries can take hours, sometimes days, to show up and many of these injuries can be dangerous – even fatal – if they are not treated in a timely manner. A ruptured spleen is one common car accident injury that can have tragic consequences if medical intervention is not taken quickly.
The spleen helps the body fight infections and filters old blood cells out of the bloodstream. It is located on the left side, just under the ribcage. This is why it is critical to monitor any pain a car accident victim may have in that area. A ruptured spleen can cause internal bleeding, which can be fatal. In addition to pain or soreness in the area, other symptoms of an injured spleen include:
- Tenderness in the abdomen area;
- Blurred vision;
- Confusion; and
Minor injuries to the spleen eventually heal on their own, under the watch of a doctor. Treatment usually includes rest and possible blood transfusions. More serious injuries may require surgery, including:
- Spleen repair by stitching up the area of the spleen that has ruptured;
- Partial spleen removal which removes just the damaged part of the spleen; or
- Complete spleen removal where the doctor removes the entire organ. A person can live without their spleen; however, it does require ongoing medical care because the person may be more prone to diseases and infections.
Victims of car crashes need to vigilant of any injury symptoms they may be experiencing and seek out medical treatment right away. Once a victim has received the medical care they need, they should also contact an experienced North Carolina car accident attorney to find out what legal options they may have against the at-fault driver, who may be liable for the victim’s medical bills, surgery, medication, rehabilitation, and loss of income.