A kidney injury can be caused by any event that results in a hard blow to the back or abdomen. Kidney injuries are not common in vehicle collisions, but when they do occur, the damage can be extensive and long-lasting. Identifying the signs of a kidney injury is crucial to getting the medical treatment needed to recover.
Diagnosing a kidney injury due to a car crash is important in filing an accurate claim with your insurance company. Noticing the signs and expressing your concerns to a doctor are the essential first steps to finding the means to recover fully.
If you believe you sustained a kidney injury because of a car crash, do not hesitate to reach out to the car accident attorney in Atlanta. We can help navigate the complicated conversations initiated by insurance companies and recover the compensation you need to get your life back to normal.
Five Signs of Kidney Damage Due to a Car Accident
According to a 2021 study by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), car crashes are among the main causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. More than 1.35 million people are victims of fatal vehicle accidents annually. Successfully recognizing and managing kidney injuries immediately after a car crash is not only important, but it can also save lives and prevent permanent organ damage.
Clinical speaking, kidney injuries caused by a car accident can present in several forms or signs because of the damage done to the organ. If any of these signs or symptoms are seen in the aftermath of a collision, a doctor should be seen immediately to confirm the diagnosis. These five signs of kidney injury include:
- Back or abdomen pain – Kidney damage is commonly associated with pain in the kidney area that radiates out to the lower back, shoulders, and down through the hips and legs.
- Bruising on the abdomen or back – Any blunt force to either side or to the middle of the back or abdomen can damage the kidneys. This damage is usually indicated by bruises on the back or stomach.
- Blood in the urine – Also known as hematuria, you may not be able to see blood in the urine and may need urine tests to confirm.
- Shock – Shortly after a car crash, kidney injuries may cause a victim to go into shock. Signs of shock include:
- Bluish fingernails and lips
- Cool and pale skin
- Physical weakness
- Rapid pulse and breathing
5. Internal Bleeding – If the kidneys receive a blow brutally enough to cause internal bleeding, it can be life-threatening. Signs of internal bleeding include:
- Flushed or pale appearance
- Impaired vision
- Low blood pressure
- Severe physical weakness
- Shortness of breath
Kidney Damage Resulting from Car Accidents
The signs and symptoms associated with the several types of kidney injuries that may occur in a vehicle collision can indicate both minor and more serious injuries. Minor injuries may not require much treatment and usually clear up with time and rest. However, more severe injuries may develop because of the damage done to the organ, requiring hospitalizations and surgery in some cases.
Even if you feel fine after a car crash, a medical examination should still be done to make sure the kidneys or any other organs are not damaged. Kidney damage may lead to renal failure or Acute Kidney Injury (AKI)—sudden loss of kidney function. Usually temporary, AKI often occurs as a side effect of surgeries or certain medications. It can also develop due to other diseases or conditions like diabetes, high blood pressure, or infections. But trauma can also cause AKI.
Organ failure, like AKI, is the third leading cause of death in trauma patients. If not treated promptly and thoroughly, AKI can be fatal because the condition leads to an accumulation of toxins in the blood. These built-up toxins can prohibit the brain, heart, and lungs from functioning properly.
The Danger of Rhabdomyolysis
Commonly referred to as “rhabdo,” Rhabdomyolysis can develop because of a litany of factors, but frequently, the condition arises from a traumatic injury. Sometimes, when the body suffers trauma that severely injures muscles, the muscles can be damaged and disintegrate. Toxic components in the muscle fibers can enter the circulation system and filter through the kidneys, causing organ damage.
The signs and symptoms of Rhabdomyolysis often develop within a few days of the traumatic event. These symptoms include:
- Discolored urine – usually brown, red, or tea-colored
- Muscle swelling and soreness
- Physical weakness
Some who suffer from Rhabdomyolysis also experience:
- Infrequent urination
In the Aftermath of Kidney Damage
In the case of kidney damage, effective care is vital. In car accident victims who develop AKI and rhabdomyolysis, urgent medical assistance can lead to a timely diagnosis and treatment in the preliminary stages before the conditions’ severity can worsen.
It is also important to keep a daily log of symptoms and any emotional or mental complications associated with the condition. Make sure test results and medical records are kept and organized. These records will act as evidence when the time comes to recover the compensation it takes to heal properly.
Contact an Atlanta Car Accident Attorney Today
The aftermath of a car crash can be overwhelming. The physical and emotional toll can devastate day-to-day life, and the financial stress can feel like an overbearing weight. The future can look bleak when you are unable to work, and the medical bills keep piling up.
It is best to consult with an attorney before speaking with a claims adjuster at an insurance company. A statement made under duress can have a negative impact on your case. It is also important to know that an insurance adjuster may not offer you the damages you deserve upfront. After a car accident, you may be entitled to pain and suffering, emotional distress, and more.
An Atlanta car accident lawyer can guide you through a personal injury claim and help recover the compensation needed to cover your medical expenses and get your life back. Contact us today to help you find an attorney who will protect your best interests and maximize the compensation you deserve.