Common Knee Injuries Received During Car AccidentsNY/NJ Legal News
Someone who has been injured in a car accident is susceptible to many types of knee injuries, from simple scrapes and bruises to critical damage to the soft tissue and ligaments. Some knee injuries are more complex than others and might demand long-term medical care or even physical therapy.
Anatomy of a Knee
The knee is one of the biggest and most intricate joints in the human body. The knee connects the femur (thigh bone) to the tibia (shin bone). The fibula, which is the smaller bone that runs adjacent to the tibia, and the patella, also known as the kneecap, are the other two bones that comprise the knee joint.
The leg muscles are connected to the bones of the knee by tendons. These tendons make it possible for the knee joint move. Inside the knee there are four ligaments that connect the bones and provide stability:
- The anterior cruciate ligament keeps the femur from backsliding onto the tibia and the tibia from sliding forward onto the femur
- The posterior cruciate ligament stops the femur from sliding forward onto the tibia or the tibia from sliding back onto the femur
- The medial and lateral collateral ligaments keeps the femur from sliding side to side
The knee also has the medial and lateral menisci. These are two C-shaped sections of cartilage that are designed to act as shock absorbers. They are located between the tibia and femur.
Finally, there are quite a few bursae. These are fluid-filled sacs that help the knee move easily.
Each one of these components has to work correctly in order for the knee to function. Acute trauma or catastrophic injury to the knee can result in severe damage that could negatively impact the victim for the rest of their life.
Common Accident-Related Knee Injuries
- Torn meniscus: This injury occurs when trauma is caused by violent twisting or hyperextension of the knee joint. The symptoms usually include pain, swelling, popping and a knee incapable of supporting any weight. Medical attention includes physical therapy to strengthen the muscles. If physical therapy is ineffective, surgery might be the next course of action.
- Knee fracture: Similar to any broken bone, a knee fracture can do varying degrees of damage. The fracture could appear at the bottom, middle, or top of the knee or could show in multiple areas. Knee fractures are usually the product of a direct hit. Typical symptoms are swelling, bruising, and being unable to straighten the leg or walk. Based on the placement and seriousness of the fracture, your physician may or may suggest surgery.
- Torn ACL: This injury takes place when the anterior cruciate ligament rips away from the joint. This is usually incredibly painful and possibly disabling. Contingent on the seriousness of the tear, rehabilitation could take as long as 6 months. It could take as long as 9 months if surgery is needed.
- MCL Tear: This is a tear or sprain to the medial collateral ligament which connects the femur to the lower leg. Signs that it is torn are stiffness, pain, and swelling. The pain will vary from moderate to severe based on how badly the ligament is damaged. An MCL tear is usually able to heal without surgery unless the tear has occurred in such a way that it is unable to heal.
Accident-related knee injuries can be severe. If your body requires weeks or months to recuperate, you are going to have to deal with lost income on top of all your medical bills. You might not be able to do the same job anymore, resulting in suppression of your earning potential.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident, then you need to retain the legal services of a licensed, qualified personal injury attorney just as soon as you are able. Here at Metro Law, we are able to help you fight for the financial compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering to which you are entitled under New Jersey law. Please reach out to us by calling (800) 469-6476 and speaking with one of our attorneys regarding a personal injury case you feel you may have. Schedule an appointment for your free consultation with us today.