Serious Knee Injuries -- A Common Result from Car Wrecks
During a car wreck, the knees are often injured from direct contact with the dashboard, but they can also damaged by twisting motions during a side-impact crash. The knees are commonly injured by fracture, cartilage, and ligament injury, such as:
• Meniscus tear: The meniscus is a pad of cartilage between the end of the femur (thigh bone) and the top of the tibia (shin bone). Trauma to the knee cap often causes this tear which can be partial or complete. The tear can be repaired through minimally-invasive arthroscopic surgery if it is partial. Complete tears may require open surgery. It is a very common cartilage injury.
• Ligament injuries: Ligament injuries are also common. When the knee strikes a dashboard there is usually injury to the posterior cruciate ligament (PCL tear). Lateral force from a side impact accident will injure the medial collateral ligament (MCL tear). Damage of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL Tear) and lateral collateral ligament (LCL Tear) are much less common in auto accidents since most passengers are in a sitting position on impact. Most ligament injuries require arthroscopic surgery. Some require open surgical repair and have a prolonged recovery period of six to 12 months before normal activity can be resumed.
• Patella (kneecap) injuries: A patellar fracture may require surgery or prolonged immobilization. The bursa is a pad of cartilage, found under the kneecap, which is often injured with knee trauma. It can become acutely inflamed after injury, a condition called patellar bursitis. Many people who sustain this injury will develop chronic bursitis and it is a disabling condition. The kneecap can also be dislodged, causing patellar dislocation. Often the patella cannot be replaced without surgery, since it is associated with the rupture of the quadriceps muscle. This condition can take six to nine months to recover from. Fractures of the upper part of the shin bone can also occur, the most common being a fracture of the proximal tibia.
If you have suffered a serious knee injury as a result of a car wreck, please contact us to speak with one of our experienced accident attorneys. We can answer your questions and make sure your rights are protected. Initial consultations are no charge.