In a car crash, a vehicle occupant’s knees may sustain a direct, blunt impact from the dashboard, steering column, or another obstacle. Ocala attorney, Jeffrey Meldon, helps you understand the basic symptoms and types of knee injuries.
In a car crash, a vehicle occupant’s knees may sustain a direct, blunt impact from the dashboard, steering column, or another obstacle in a head-on crash, rear-end collision, or rollover accident. The knees may also be “crushed” by the downward force of the dashboard or steering column or by the impact of the side door in a side-impact, or t-bone, crash. Experienced Ocala attorney helps you understand the basics symptoms and types of injuries.
Symptoms of a knee injury may range from subtle to acute and may include:
- Redness and swelling;
- A ripping or popping sensation;
- Tenderness or tingling;
- Locking or grinding;
- Weakness and instability;
- Variance in color (bruising)or temperature (cold or fever);
- Pain while resting or doing activity;
- Deformity or protruding bones from fractures; or
- Change in range of motion (inability to extend the knee or walk).
Some common knee injuries from acute trauma may include the following:
- PCL Injury: The PCL (posterior cruciate ligament) is stronger than its companion ligament, the ACL, and is much less commonly torn due to its strength. The PCL braces against excessive translation or movement in the anteroposterior (AP) plane. A PCL tear requires strong, blunt force trauma, such as a dashboard strike to the anterior aspect of the knee in a car accident. A person sustaining a PCL injury may also report falling on a flexed knee. A PCL injury is often due to major trauma and is rarely an isolated injury, associated with other ligament and bone damage.
- ACL Injury: The ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) crisscrosses the knee joint with its companion ligament, the PCL. The ACL primarily stabilizes the knee, preventing forward motion of the tibia on the femur. An ACL rupture is one of the most serious and common knee injuries. Those with ACL damage are often unable to walk and experience profound pain that worsens with motion. An ACL injury may be isolated or occur with other knee injuries, especially a meniscal injury or tear of the MCL.
- MCL Injury: The MCL (medial collateral ligament) is the most commonly damaged ligament in the knee and may be sprained or torn. Often, there is a tearing or ripping sensation along the inner knee, causing bruising and swelling. A force from the outer to the inner knee is typically responsible for an MCL injury. An MCL injury is common in sports and can result from twisting the knee with a planted foot when skiing.
- Knee Sprain & Strain: Knee sprains are characterized by the stretching, tearing, or rupturing of ligaments or the joint capsule. A strain refers to stretching or severing of muscles or tendons. Collateral (MCL & LCL) and cruciate (PCL & ACL) ligament sprains are common. Muscular strains are also relatively commonplace. Sprains (ligamentous) and strains (muscular) may assigned a grade (I to III), based on severity of impairment:
I. Grade I: stretching only with tenderness, minimal swelling, and no gross instability.
II. Grade II: Partial tear or rupture with moderate tenderness and mild instability that is moderately incapacitating.
III. Grade III: Complete tear or rupture, discomfort, edema and swelling, conspicuous instability, resulting in severe disability.
- Dislocation of the Knee: A knee dislocation is a truly emergent “limb-threatening” injury that could result in amputation without timely and adequate medical treatment. Fortunately, dislocation is rare, caused by an especially powerful blow to the knee. A posterior dislocation may result from force to the proximal tibia, such as a dashboard crash injury or a forceful fall on a flexed knee. An untreated dislocation, causing arterial injury, leaves the lower leg without blood supply, leading to limb loss.
- Fracture: Fracture of any of the bones in the knee is traumatic and typically caused by moderate to high forces, such as a car accident. A fracture may be closed or open, characterized by an obvious deformity or protruding bone. Depending on the fracture, a knee may require immobilization in a cast or surgery. Often, fractures heal without permanent damage problems but may be complicated by arthritis or arterial injury.
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We are experienced personal injury attorneys, trial lawyers, negotiators, litigators, paralegals, and staff that have been proudly working to get accident victims the justice they deserve for over 40 years in Gainesville, Ocala, Lake City, Inverness, and the rest of North Central Florida and North Florida. Accidents involving a car crash, truck wreck, and motorcycle, bicycle, or pedestrian accidents, dog bites, slip and falls, medical malpractice, and criminal defense are all included in our practice.
Based on Jeffrey Meldon’s, founder of Meldon Law, over 40 years of helping accident victims get justice and a fair shake from the insurance companies, he has written the consumer guide book, Seven Mistakes That Can Wreck Your Florida Accident Case. You can request your free, no obligation copy right now, or contact our office for your complimentary copy sent to you today.
Contact Meldon Law at (800) 373-8000 or (352) 373-8000 immediately if you have been involved in a serious auto, truck, or motorcycle accident. We are in your community, have the experience and resources required to work towards obtaining a fair settlement for you – we are here to help you.