Common Eye Injuries Caused by Car Accidents
Good vision is something that most people take for granted. We need our sight for quality of life and for most jobs. If your eyes are damaged and you are no longer able to work and provide for yourself or your family that is a devastating injury. It’s important to know that your eyes can be injured in a car crash and that motor vehicle accidents are actually a major cause of eye injuries. Many people don’t realize that their eyes are injured after a collision; as a result, researchers have been calling for more studies to be done on motor vehicle-related eye injuries to help doctors diagnose, manage, and treat people who suffer eye injuries from an accident.
How do eye injuries happen in car accidents?
There are several ways that people can suffer eye injuries as a result of an accident:
- Unsecured object striking the eye
- Airbag deployment
- Face coming into contact with the steering wheel
- Broken glass from the windshield
- Traumatic brain injury that affects vision
Common eye injuries caused by car accidents
If you were in a serious car accident and are experiencing any eye pain, loss of vision, floaters, flashes of light, a shadow in your field of vision, sudden sensitivity to light, headaches or nausea, blurred vision, swelling around the eye, or visible injuries to your eye; seek a medical diagnosis and appropriate treatment from a physician. Common eye injuries caused by car accidents include:
Chemical burns. If the powder from the airbag gets into your eyes, your vision could be affected by a chemical burn.
Retinal detachment or tear. The force of a car crash can cause the retina to separate from the blood vessels it depends on for oxygen. Permanent vision loss can occur if emergency care is not sought.
Lacerations to the surface of the eye. If the collision causes an object such as broken glass to scratch or puncture your eye, your vision could be seriously compromised.
Corneal abrasions. A corneal abrasion is a scratch or abrasion of the cornea that can have serious impacts on your vision if not treated by a doctor. In an accident, this injury is often caused by flying debris.
Orbital Fracture. An orbital fracture is when the bone of the eye socket is broken – this can happen when the face comes into contact with the steering wheel. If left untreated, an orbital fracture can result in serious vision problems.
Hyphema. Hyphema is when blood pools or accumulates in the front of the eye between the cornea and the iris. This condition is caused by a direct hit to the eye such as slamming into the steering wheel and requires emergency medical care to avoid permanent vision loss.
Optic nerve damage. Increased pressure in the skull caused by a brain injury can put pressure on the optic nerves. Optic nerves carry messages from the eyes to the brain. Without treatment, optic nerve damage can cause blurred vision.
Traumatic Maculopathy. Traumatic Maculopathy is an injury to the macula located at the center of the retina. This injury can cause vision loss and can be caused by whiplash.
Traumatic Optic Neuropathy. Traumatic Optic Neuropathy is damage to the optic nerve by direct or indirect trauma to the eye. This injury can result in functional impairment of vision such as vision loss or the loss of color vision and it can be hard to diagnose and treat.
Blood in the vitreous/Vitreous hemorrhage. A head injury can cause blood vessels to bleed into the vitreous humor and lead to vision problems such as flashes of light and floaters.
Black eyes. Black eyes can happen when a head slams into the steering wheel or from flying debris. They don’t look pretty but they are generally not considered serious injuries.
Seek the help of a car accident attorney
If you or a loved one was injured because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced car accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times larger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!