As a personal injury attorney, I can tell you that a wrist injury is one of the more common injuries after a car accident. More specifically, many of our clients suffer distal radius fractures (a fracture of the large bone (radius) at the end of the forearm near the wrist) and/or a triangular fibrocartilage complex (TFCC) tear (cartilage that keeps the forearm bones stable when the hand grasps or the forearm rotates) even after a low-impact motor vehicle accident.
The wrist is an extremely complex collection of many bones and joints. During a car accident, your body absorbs the force of the impact. The delicate/weakest parts of the body (wrist, knee, lower lumbar, lower cervical) are the areas typically most affected by trauma. During a car accident, your wrist can unexpectedly bend back towards your forearm. A distal radius fracture or TFCC tear can occurs as a result of trauma to your outstretched arm (i.e. tightly gripping the steering wheel or pulling on the steering wheel to stop the rotation of your car). In situations where a client observes the accident occurring (i.e. side impact / head on collision) as opposed to a rear-end collision, the client is more likely to tightly grip the steering wheel to brace for the accident, thus leading to a wrist injury.
To diagnose a wrist injury after a car accident, you will need an X-Ray and/or MRI. An orthopedic surgeon will determine the most appropriate course of treatment, which may involve surgery depending on the severity of the break / tear. Grade 3 (complete ligament tears) almost always require surgery, however.
If you are involved in a car accident where you injure your wrist, call the personal injury attorneys at Lyons, Snyder & Collin for a free consultation. We can determine whether the at-fault party has available insurance coverage to compensate you for your past medical bills, future medical bills, and pain and suffering related to this injury.