The medical term for a punctured lung caused by a traumatic force to the chest is traumatic pneumothorax. In serious car accidents, if a force hits the victim’s chest, the victim’s rib may puncture the lung. This life-threatening injury must be treated immediately in order to save the victim’s life.
Symptoms of a Punctured Lung
There are several signs of a punctured lung to look after your accident in Bridgeport, West Virginia including:
- chest pain (either dull or sharp, and increases during inhalation or coughing);
- weak pulse or a rapid heart rate;
- tight chest and difficulty breathing;
- nasal flaring;
- abmal patterns of breathing;
- pale, slightly blue skin from lack of oxygen (cyanosis); and
It’s imperative to call paramedics straightaway, and then try to remain calm until they arrive. Fortunately, if the injury is treated in time, victims have a good chance of recovery.
Diagnosing a Punctured Lung after an Accident
After the accident, Bridgeport, West Virginia doctors will begin a physical examination to assess the injuries. If a punctured lung is suspected, they will use several diagnostic tools to confirm the injury, including:
- chest X-rays;
- an arterial blood gas analysis;
- a CT scan; and
- a Bronchoscopy.
Treating Punctured Lung Injuries
After the doctors have confirmed a punctured lung injury, they determine the extent of the damage. Smaller pneumothorax may be able to heal primarily on its own, only requiring small doses of extra oxygen.
For more severe punctured lung injuries, doctors will likely insert a chest tube through the ribs, which serves 2 purposes, to drain some of the accumulated air and to help inflate the collapsed lung.
In some cases, more drastic treatment measures may be used. Lung surgery may be required, in which doctors will attempt to repair the air leak. In other situations, doctors may administer a chemical into the lung, designed to create internal scar tissue.
If you are a loved one suffered a serious injury in an accident in Bridgeport, West Virginia, or if you lost a loved in an accident because of someone else’s negligence, you should discuss your case with an attorney. A Harrison County injury claim may be viable option for you to receive financial remuneration for your medical bills, pain, and mental anguish.
Contact an Accident Attorney in Harrison County
Unfortunately, car accidents are a regular occurrence on West Virginia roadways such as I-79, I-77, Route 50, Route 33, and I-68. In fact, our state averages over 40,000 car crashes, over 400 deaths, and over 11,000 serious injuries each year. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a teen driving accident in West Virginia order a FREE copy of our consumer guide, The 7 Biggest Mistakes that Can Wreck Your West Virginia Car Accident Claim then contact the Clarksburg personal injury attorneys at The Miley Legal Group for a FREE consultation – 304-326-1800.