Chicago Bone Fracture Accident Lawyers
The tremendous stress and impact force from an accident or severe fall can cause bone fractures. Most fractures in personal injury cases are sustained in motor vehicle accidents such as car accidents, medical malpractice, or motorcycle accidents.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC understands the impact that a broken bone can have on an individual's life, including immediate pain, medical bills, and lingering disability. We offer a free review of Chicago personal injury cases involving broken bone injuries, and we invite you to discuss your case with an attorney today.
If another party's negligent actions caused your injury, they are legally responsible for all costs associated with it. Our Chicago car accident lawyers are experienced with getting individuals of all ages compensation for their pain and medical expenses related to injuries sustained in accidents.
Our law firm is based in Chicago, but we handle cases across Illinois. If you have been involved in an accident, contact a personal injury attorney today for a free consultation.
Bone Fracture Accident FAQs
Is a Fractured Bone a Broken Bone?
While every bone in the body is formed with massive rigid tissue, some medical conditions or forceful impact could completely fracture the bone into multiple pieces, lengthwise or crosswise. Broken bones are fractured bones that are categorized into different types that include:
- Stable fracture
- Transverse fracture
- Open, compound fracture
- Oblique fracture
- Comminuted fracture
What Bones Can You Break in a Car Accident?
Any bone in the body could fracture, break, or be crushed from a motor vehicle accident's forceful impact. However, the bones most likely to break in a vehicle accident include:
- Spinal cord vertebrae
- The femur (the leg's upper long bone)
- The pelvis
- The collarbone
- Foot and ankle bones
Do Fractured Bones Heal Themselves?
While most fractured bones can heal without assistance, the broken or shattered portions of the bones must be set back in the place to ensure it heals properly. Typically, broken bones are extremely painful, mainly when pressure is applied to the injured area.
During the healing process, the body uses stem cells to renew the damaged area by first creating cartilage as the bone's temporary plug. The cartilage will eventually be replaced by newly formed bone material that is often stronger than the original bone.
What Happens if a Fractured Bone Goes Untreated?
Untreated bone fractures usually create a delayed union or non-union where the bone never heals. A delayed union broken bone will often create ongoing tenderness, inflammation, swelling, bruising, and pain in the area that can become significantly worse over time.
In untreated bone fracture might allow the bone to heal incorrectly, causing a loss of function of fingers and toes, hands and feet, arms, and legs.
Can Fractures Heal without a Cast?
Technically, a fractured bone will begin the healing process before the bone is set and held in place with a cast. The body naturally forms new bone material using cartilage that is eventually replaced by dense bone material.
However, untreated broken bones that are never set into a cast will likely heal improperly, causing significant problems to the body's functionality.
What are the 4 Types of Fractures?
Doctors classify fractures in five different types that include:
- A compression fractures where the bone was crushed that leave the affected area flatter or wider in appearance
- A transverse break where the bone is fractured along a straight line
- A greenstick break is an incomplete fracture where only a portion of the bone is broken
- An oblique fracture that breaks the bone along a diagonal
- A spiral fracture that breaks the bone in a spiral that is typically caused by a twisting event
Common Causes of Illinois Bone Fracture Cases
Suppose another party's negligence caused your fracture injury. In that case, you are entitled to recover for the resulting medical expenses, pain, and disability—both past costs and estimated future costs—no matter what your physical condition was before the accident.
If there is sufficient medical testimony to establish a fracture's causation, a person or entity responsible for causing the accident might be held legally liable for the ensuing damages. Our Chicago law office regularly represents people who have sustained fractured bones due to:
Your Chicago personal injury lawyer will review all the circumstances surrounding your injury to identify potential defendants involved in your car accident case. A defendant could include:
- A landlord who neglected to repair a broken stairwell
- A supermarket that neglected to clear away ice and snow outside the store entrance
- A motorist who failed to obey traffic laws that caused the car accident
- Others that were directly or indirectly responsible for your damages
Types of Bone Fractures
Large and small bones tend to fracture when there is a significant amount of stress applied to bone tissue that can no longer bend against the pressure without cracking or breaking. A person's bones might be more susceptible to breakage if disease or age has weakened the bone tissue or diminished bone density.
Bone fractures come in different forms. Your doctor will use various terms to diagnose your injury. These terms include:
- Stress — Hard to spot but easy to feel, stress fractures are hairline cracks within bones.
- Complete— This type of fracture usually cleanly breaks the bone into at least two pieces. Complete fractures are typically the result of severe car crashes or slip and fall events on hard surfaces.
- Greenstick — This type of fracture happens when the bone cracks on just one side and not through to the other side of the bone. Greenstick fractures usually result from accidents such as falling down a flight of defective stairs.
- Open — This type of break produces a bone that pierces through the skin and causes mild to severe bleeding.
- Closed — Also called simple fractures, closed fractures happen when the bone does not break through the skin.
- Single — The bone breaks at a single location.
- Comminuted — Bones that break into three pieces or more or are crushed.
- Displaced — When the trauma not only leaves the affected bone broken but also moves it out of proper alignment, complicating the healing process.
- Bowing — These fractures occur only in children when the soft bone bends but does not entirely break.
Besides pain, a fracture's signs and symptoms can include bruising or swelling in the injury's location.
The Most Frequently Broken Bones
The clavicle, also known as your collarbone, is one of the most commonly broken bones in the body. The long length of the clavicle leaves it prone to injury, no matter if you are a child or adult.
The other broken bones owe their breaks primarily to where they are situated and their usage by humans. Not only are these bones fractured the most, but they also produce some of the most devastating consequences if fractured because of their central role in daily functioning.
Thus, it is essential to try to protect them from injury. The risks of breaking individual bones increase with age. For instance, the bone that is broken the most among young people is the wrist.
However, for older Americans, the hip is the most common fracture.
Medical Treatments for Bone Fracture
The location and type of fracture and the break's severity will determine your medical treatment. After determining what type of fracture you have, your physician will create a plan of action to set the bone and stabilize it in place during the healing process.
You might need to wear a fiberglass or plaster cast to ensure your bones remain set in the same position until the healing is complete.
Based on your type of injury, a surgeon might insert screws into the upper and lower portion of your undamaged bone to ensure that the broken or fractured area remains in place (known as "open reduction internal fixation," or ORIF). The surgical procedure might require the attachment of plates bolted on the bone's outer surfaces.
How Long Does it Take to Heal From a Broken Bone?
How soon a fracture heals depends on the severity of the break and the level of care you receive. Typically, the healing process can take anywhere from one to several months.
Everyone's body heals at a different rate, so your healing process could take less or more time.
Fractures in the Elderly
The severity of an injury usually depends on both the type and location of the injury and the person's physical condition. As we age, our bones become thinner and more brittle. Even a minor accident can have a horrific impact on an older adult due to the resulting fracture's magnitude.
The elderly are at risk of developing complex injuries from accidents and falls that might require surgery to stabilize the bones with hardware and extended rehabilitation.
Special Considerations for Children With Broken Bones
Children are also at a unique risk of sustaining severe injures due to the activities associated with childhood. While children's bone fractures are more likely to heal faster than an older person's bones, doctors must evaluate every childhood fracture to determine if it involves the growth plate.
The growth plate is located near the long bones near the joints where two bones are connected, in children and adolescents, where bones grow longer. A break in the bone near the growth plate—also known as a Salter-Harris fracture—may limit average growth in a particular bone, leading to deformity or a shorter bone on one side of a growing child's body.
It might also interfere with normal joint motion, which can impair function. When a fracture involves the growth plate, physicians might need to monitor the child for several years to ensure there is no impact on the growth process.
What Kind of Compensation Can I Receive for my Injury?
If another's negligence caused your injury, you are entitled to receive financial compensation involving your economic damages, including lost wages and medical expenses, as well as your noneconomic damages, including pain, suffering, emotional distress, and loss of ordinary life.
Your spouse might be able to recover for loss of consortium and loss of services. Your case's monetary value depends on the severity of your injuries and the extent of your damages. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC can review your case to determine your claim's worth if filed against every potentially responsible party.
Our personal injury attorneys will calculate your case's value based on the circumstances surrounding the accident, past and future medical bills, your need for future medical care, and how your injuries have altered your daily living activities.
How Long Do I Have to File an Illinois Personal Injury Lawsuit?
The state statute of limitations restricts the amount of time you must file a claim before giving up all legal rights to ever seeking financial compensation at any time in the future. Illinois gives victims of personal injury two years to file a lawsuit. (See 735 ILCS 5/13-202)
That period might be extended if the injured is a minor. Your attorney can help you identify the amount of time you have left before giving up your rights to seek monetary recovery.
However, suppose you wait too long, the evidence you need to prove your case could disappear. In that case, eyewitnesses could move away, people's memories could diminish, and the ability to prove your case to a claims adjuster or a jury could become much more problematic.
Your lawyer needs to get started right away to determine the types of injuries, the length of your recovery process, the permanency of your disability, and the extent of hospitalization and medical bills you will generate in the future for needed treatment.
Therefore, it is critically important that you consult an Illinois personal injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident so that he or she can protect your future recovery should you decide to file an action.
The experienced attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC work vigorously to ensure that accident victims receive the maximum compensation possible under the law. Call our offices today to see what you can recover from a personal injury lawsuit.
What Are Some Sample Illinois Bone Fracture Accident Settlements and Jury Verdicts?
Our Chicago broken bones attorneys have studied legal issues involving patients with fractures seeking financial compensation from those responsible for the accident. Some of these cases involve workers' compensation benefits, wrongful death, spinal cord damage, and traumatic brain injury.
$250,000 SETTLEMENT, Premises Liability, Cook County, IL
A 49-year-old man fell from his condo building's third-floor balcony when the floor caved because the verandah allegedly needed repairs. Management informed tenants not to use the balconies but directed the plaintiff to remove items from his balcony, and it collapsed while he was doing so.
The victim sustained a broken arm that required an ORIF procedure and a comminuted nasal fracture, resulting in $13,376 in medical expenses. The insurance company for Reliable Management Realty Ltd paid fair compensation to settle the injury claim.
$1.1 MILLION SETTLEMENT, Auto Accident, DuPage County, IL
A 47-year-old man sustained a broken knee, broken sternum, and multiple broken ribs in a car accident when the defendant ran a stop sign and hit his vehicle in Roselle, Illinois. The knee injury required ORIF surgery and bone grafting.
The plaintiff's damages included medical expenses of $358,239, plus lost income of $17,536. He alleged that arthritis might necessitate a future knee replacement. American Family Auto Insurance (the defendant's insurance company) paid the negotiated catastrophic injury settlement to the plaintiff.
$2.95 MILLION SETTLEMENT, Motor Vehicle, Cook County, IL
A 36-year-old man suffered a severe injury to his lower left leg with significant muscle, tissue, and bone loss when he was injured in an auto accident. A Hazel Crest, Illinois unmarked police car pulled over the plaintiff for allegedly failing to signal.
The victim was ordered to get out of his vehicle to stand between his car's trunk and the police vehicle. A car driven by one of the defendants rear-ended the police car, pinning the plaintiff between the two vehicles.
The plaintiff sustained a severe crush injury to his leg, which required ORIF surgery and multiple skin grafts, resulting in medical bills of $825,000 and dependence on a leg brace. His injury left him unable to return to his manufacturing job or do anything but sedentary work.
His past and future lost wages were estimated at $850,000. He accused the officers of violating mandatory safety policies and not activating the emergency flashers on their vehicle. His car accident attorney negotiated the car crash settlement paid by insurers for the Village of Homewood, City of Country Club Hills, and the other vehicle's driver.
$418,400 AWARD, Truck accident, Jo Daviess County, IL
A 65-year-old Meredith Glasgow Farms (Scales Mound, Illinois) farm worker was injured when a front loader tractor operated by his supervisor ran over the back of his legs. The victim suffered complex fractures in his legs and right foot, requiring extensive surgery, including ORIF (open reduction internal fixation).
His medical expenses totaled $65,416. After the plaintiff finished presenting his evidence, the court entered a directed verdict against the defendant on the issue of liability in the amount of $418,416, consisting of damages for medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of everyday life, and loss of services and consortium for plaintiff's spouse.
$450,000 AWARD, Slip & Fall, Cook County, IL
A 54-year-old woman sustained leg and ankle fractures when she fell down the stairs of her apartment building, which was the only stairway access for the building. Her treatment required ORIF (open reduction internal fixation). Her damages included $21,263 of medical expenses and $127,250 lost income.
The plaintiff contended the stairway had no handrail or carpeting, was poorly lit, and failed to comply with applicable Chicago and Illinois building codes. A default order was entered against the defendant's landlord.
Get Help From Skilled Chicago Accident Attorneys
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is committed to getting you the maximum compensation for your broken bone injuries case. Our personal injury law office has helped recover significant damages for many clients who have sustained fractures in various types of accidents.
Put our experience to work for you: As attorneys experienced with Chicago personal injury cases, we offer free case evaluation at your home or hospital room. Moreover, we offer a no-fee guarantee: If our office cannot get a recovery for you, then our services are free. Contact our office today at (888) 424-5757.
Additional Information About Treatment of Orthopedic Injuries
Here are links to some outside resources that discuss common injuries and their treatment: