While many kinds of injuries can happen when a truck crash occurs, one of the most common kinds is a crushing injury. Crushing injuries can happen if part of the truck lands on a driver, crushes the cabin of a smaller vehicle or pins someone in some other way. Rollover accidents may cause crushing injuries, as can front-end and rear-end collisions. Even side-swipe crashes might result in crushing injuries depending on the vehicles that were involved.
Crushing injuries are dangerous, and can be deadly, because of a few reasons. First, crush injuries significantly damage the area where they occur, destroying tissue, bones or ligaments, for example.
The second reason they’re so dangerous is because it’s normal for the victim to be totally lucid despite serious injuries. The patient may be awake, talkative and feel fine. Despite that, they may have serious, potentially fatal, injuries lurking below the surface. Moving anything off their body could lead to more significant symptoms and possible shock, which is why it’s a good idea not to move them or the item holding them down until help arrives.
What are some of the serious complications of crushing injuries?
Crushing injuries can lead to serious complications. Crushing injuries may cause:
- Compartment syndrome
- Crush syndrome
- Chronic pain
Compartment syndrome happens when there is increased pressure within a closed compartment of the body. Pain can be severe with this injury, and it is made worse when the muscles of that area are stretched. The area may have no pulse, either.
Crush syndrome is a reperfusion injury. That means that the body is injured as blood is allowed to flow freely once again. Potassium levels after a crushing injury, as well as the levels of several other toxins and electrolytes, make reperfusion in the body dangerous. Emergency medical teams have to be there to counteract those changes in the body, or the person could die from traumatic rhabdomyolysis, metabolic acidosis and shock.
Crushing injuries have the potential to be fatal, so it’s always a good idea to do what you can to stabilize the victim until help arrives. Getting medical attention quickly is the best way to prevent life-threatening complications.