Christa R. Haggai, Attorney-at-Law
One of the most common causes of a rib fracture is from an automobile accident, from the impact of an airbag, or a slip and fall accident. These can be very painful injuries. A rib fracture is a crack or break in one of the bones of the rib cage. Because the breaths protect the ribcage and help you breathe, one or more broken ribs can make it more difficult to breath.
There are several common causes of rib fractures. During an automobile accident they may be caused by the force of the impact of the crash itself as well as the impact of the airbag if deployed. Slip and fall accidents are another common cause of these painful fractures. The ribs protect the vital organs in the chest, including the heart and lungs, and the muscles connected to the ribs are used to breathe. Because of their location and function, one or more broken ribs may make it difficult to breathe, and certainly more painful.
Rib fractures can be caused by seatbelts and airbags deploying upon an automobile accident.
Rib fractures may also occur when a pedestrian or a bicyclists is struck by an automobile.
Rib fractures are also common injuries in slip and fall accidents.
You may also experience other symptoms due to the difficulty in breathing that may include:
A rib fracture may be diagnosed by palpation of the chest to find out where you are hurt. Your doctor may also listen to you breathe to insure air is coming in and out of your lungs normally. Finally, your doctor will likely order an x-ray to get an image of your injuries.
The primary treatment for a rib injury is rest. You may need to ice the ribcage. Additionally, while you are healing to cough and take deep breaths regularly, which will help prevent pneumonia or partial collapse of lung tissue.