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Why compound or open fractures from crashes cost more

On Behalf of | Jun 12, 2023 | Personal Injury |

It is very easy for a car crash to lead to broken bones. The force of the initial impact and the violent motion of the vehicles involved can break someone’s bones, possibly in more than one place. Car crashes are often so violent that they can cause extreme fractures, such as comminuted or spiral fractures where a bone breaks into multiple pieces.

The force of a crash could also cause an open or compound fracture. Unlike closed or stable fractures, the bone moves quite a bit in an open fracture and pushes through the skin. These severe breaks can potentially cost more than insurance will pay and may force people to take their collision claim to civil court.

Why are open fractures so expensive to treat?

They require emergency trauma care

Any broken bone requires timely medical assistance, but not every fracture generates the same degree of medical risk for the hurt individual. A stable fracture may be painful but poses minimal pressing health risks.

An open fracture, on the other hand, can endanger someone’s life in two very obvious and immediate ways. Blood loss can put someone in a dire medical situation after an open fracture, and the exposure of the bone and surrounding tissue to the open air also puts the individual at a significantly elevated risk of infection. Emergency stabilization and transportation are almost always necessary in cases involving open fractures. The hurt individual will likely require immediate medical care and surgery after reaching a hospital.

Surgical treatment and aftercare are costly

The standard treatment process for a compound fracture involves surgically cleaning and setting the bone. The process would be too painful to do with someone conscious. Deep cleaning and tissue repair work are often necessary to stave off infection and correct the damage done during the initial trauma.

Recovering from that surgery will add weeks to someone’s total recovery time in many cases. Individuals may also require more rehabilitative support from physical therapists and other professionals when their body finally recovers from the compound fracture. A longer period of immobilization will usually translate to greater losses in strength and range of motion.

Sometimes, open fractures are severe enough to result in lingering consequences that affect someone’s functional abilities and daily quality of life. Learning more about how specific injuries resulting from car crashes can cost more than people anticipate could help those who are coping with the aftermath of a recent car crash to make truly informed decisions about their rights and options.