A bicyclist involved in an accident with a motor vehicle is at risk of sustaining severe injuries. One injury type that a cyclist may suffer from, and that can be extremely life-threatening or deadly, is an internal abdominal injury.
Abdominal Structures Injured During Bicycle Accidents
An injury to the abdomen can be extremely serious. Doctors classify the injuries by which part of the abdomen suffers damage during an accident, as well as the degree of trauma.
The Merck Manual Home Edition lists several structures in the abdomen that might suffer damages in an accident.
- The abdominal wall
- Solid organs like the liver, spleen, pancreas, or kidneys
- Hollow organs like the stomach, small intestine, colon, uterus, and bladder
- Blood vessels in the abdomen
Causes of Abdominal Organ Damage
Abdominal organ damage may happen in the event of trauma to the abdominal region during a bike accident. This trauma may be the result of either a blunt force or a penetrating force to the abdomen.
When a motor vehicle driver hits a bicyclist, abdominal trauma may occur during several stages of the accident.
- During the impact
- As the cyclist hits the ground
- From debris or other objects hitting the cyclist’s abdomen during the accident
Dangers of Abdominal Organ Trauma
One of the biggest risks of damaged organs in the abdomen is internal bleeding. Internal bleeding can be especially dangerous and could lead to death in severe cases. In some cases, trauma to abdominal structures can cause a rupture.
Other types of complications include the following, according to the Merck Manual Home Edition.
- Hematoma rupture
- Intestinal blockage
- Abdominal compartment syndrome
Injured organs may swell following an accident, which can create pressure in the abdomen, leading to discomfort, pain, organ damage, and an increased risk of death.
An Injured Cyclist’s Rights Following an Accident
If your or a loved one suffered internal abdominal injuries in a bicycle accident caused by someone else, you may file a claim for damages. This requires proving the other party was negligent and caused the wreck, and that the wreck caused your injuries. You must also establish your damages.
In Washington, you have three years to file a claim. You may be able to recover damages for lost wages, medical expenses, pain, suffering, and more.
A Seattle Bicycle Accident Attorney Can Help You
Max Meyers Law, PLLC, helps Seattle bicycle accident victims injured by other parties. Our attorneys will provide you with an initial consultation at no cost to you and will help you throughout the claims process. If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to call us today at 425-399-7000 or use our online contact form.