Car accident scene

The chest is particularly vulnerable to injury in a car crash because it has little protection from the impact. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicate that nearly 40 percent of drivers’ severe injuries in non-rollover crashes are to the chest.

If you suffered a chest injury in a car accident in St. Louis, you could be entitled to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost income, and other losses related to the wreck.

With over 50 years of combined legal experience, the car accident attorneys at Sumner Law Group, LLC, are prepared to help you pursue the justice and compensation you deserve. We have won several multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements for injury victims like you in St. Louis and across the state.

Contact our office today for a free consultation if you suffered chest injuries in a St. Louis car accident.

How Our St. Louis Car Accident Lawyers Can Help After a Crash Causing Chest Injuries

If you sustained chest injuries in a car accident, you might feel overwhelmed and unsure what to do next. Luckily, you don’t have to face this challenging time alone. At Sumner Law Group, LLC, our personal injury team can provide the legal advice you need. We can help you by:

  • Investigating the cause of the accident
  • Identifying all liable parties
  • Gathering crucial evidence
  • Managing communication between you and the insurer
  • Negotiating for maximum compensation
  • Preparing your case for court if necessary

How Do Car Accidents Cause Chest Injuries?

Car accidents are often violent, traumatic events. The sheer force of a car accident can cause severe chest injuries in several ways.

  • Seatbelt injuries – There is no doubt seatbelts save lives. However, seatbelts can also cause chest injuries during car accidents. When a collision occurs, the force exerted on a person’s body can cause the seatbelt to violently restrain the chest, leading to contusions or fractures of the ribs and sternum.
  • Airbag impact injuries – Airbags deploy rapidly during crashes to protect occupants from hitting the windshield. However, the force of airbag deployment can also cause chest injuries like contusions and chemical burns.
  • Steering wheel or dashboard impact – Without seatbelts or airbags to protect them, drivers and passengers can collide with the steering wheel or dashboard, crushing ribs and puncturing internal organs.
  • Projectile injuries – Flying projectiles in a car accident can also cause chest injuries. In a collision, loose objects within the car can strike a passenger’s chest, while wreckage from outside can also cause injuries if it flies through windows.

Types and Causes of Chest Injuries from Car Accidents

The sheer blunt force trauma of a car accident can cause significant damage to the chest. Some of the most common types of chest injuries that result from car accidents include:

  • Fractured ribs
  • Fractured sternum
  • Flail chest, which is when several ribs are fractured in more than one place, and the chest wall moves in the opposite direction when a victim breathes
  • Punctured lungs
  • Blunt injury to the heart
  • Penetrating chest wounds
  • Damage to the esophagus, trachea, and diaphragm
  • Pulmonary contusions
  • Pneumothorax, which is when air accumulates in the spaces between the lungs and chest wall, leading to the partial or complete collapse of a lung or both lungs
  • Skin contusions

Signs of Chest Injuries After a St. Louis Car Accident

Minor chest injuries might manifest as minor discomfort. More severe chest injuries can cause swelling, intense pain, and difficulty breathing. Some of the most common signs of chest injury following a St. Louis car accident include:

  • Chest pain
  • Pain that worsens when coughing or breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Tenderness, bruising, or swelling at the impact site 
  • A crunchy or crackling sensation under the skin or ribs
  • Coughing up blood
  • Heart palpitations

Compensation Available for Chest Injury Victims in St. Louis

Chest injuries can cause significant medical complications and lead to life-changing problems. If you suffered a chest injury in a St. Louis car accident, you may be entitled to seek compensation for the following:

  • Medical expenses
  • Rehabilitation costs
  • Lost income
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Loss of quality of life
  • Pain and suffering

What Should I Do If I’ve Suffered a Chest Injury in a Car Accident?

You can take steps after a car accident to protect your legal rights and safety. If you suffer a chest injury in a crash, you should:

  • Seek medical attention. Seek medical treatment immediately if you suspect you may have a chest injury. Even if you feel fine initially, you should see a doctor to get checked out, as some symptoms do not manifest for days or weeks. Additionally, your medical records could be crucial evidence in your case.
  • Call an attorney. A seasoned attorney can review your situation, explain your legal options, help you navigate the claims process, manage communication between you and the insurer, and negotiate for maximum compensation for all your losses.
  • Follow your treatment plan. It takes time for chest injuries to heal. Follow your doctor’s treatment plan and keep all follow-up appointments. Forgoing treatment for any reason can jeopardize your health and your case.
  • Stay off social media. Avoid posting pictures or information about the accident on social media. The insurance adjuster and opposing attorneys may attempt to use your words against you to diminish the value of your claim.
  • Keep all bills and receipts. Retain copies of all your medical bills, car repair invoices, and other receipts of costs related to the crash. These documents, along with pay stubs and other paperwork, can help your attorney calculate the fair value of your claim.

Schedule a Free Consultation with Our St. Louis Car Crash Lawyers

Chest trauma after a car accident in St. Louis can cause painful symptoms and lifelong complications. At Sumner Law Group, LLC, our experienced St. Louis car accident attorneys want to help you pursue the compensation you deserve for your medical bills and other crash-related expenses.

Contact our office today to get started with a free consultation with our St. Louis car crash chest injury lawyers.