Facial Trauma Injury
Facial Trauma Fracture Injuries - emergency health condition
Facial Trauma Injury - There are various incidents that cause facial trauma injury, but the majority of these injuries arise by motor vehicle accident. It is so common in automobile collisions because the face is the most exposed body part. In addition, there is little protection provided for the face while driving. Emergency rooms and trauma centers admit patients on a daily basis, two-thirds of these patients have facial trauma. And more than 70% of these patients sustained the injury as a result of a car, truck, bus or other type of auto related incident. Many of these auto accidents are life threatening, especially when there is high velocity involved, occurring at high speeds on the Southern California Roadways and Freeways. In such incidents, the person may suffer from a brain injury or injuries to other essential organs as well.
Facial Trauma Injury Categories and Priorities
Facial trauma can be divided into two distinct categories. Both types can occur during a car crash. However, when hard tissue injury arises, soft tissue exposure is always present. The first category is known as soft tissue. These injuries sustained by the soft tissue of the face: consists of an envelope that encompasses the skin, fat, muscle, nerves, eyes, etc. The second category is known as hard tissue. These injuries sustained by the hard tissue of the face: consists of the skull bones and face. The hard tissue provides support for the soft tissue. When assessing severity, the following priorities are followed when a trauma patient arrives at an emergency room.
- Preservation of life before anything else regardless of what the injury is;
- Maintenance of vital function;
- Restoration of form (including emergency and plastic surgery).
Facial trauma may lead to death
The middle portion of the face has high speed impact in accidents. The lower part of the face where the jaw lies is usually injured secondary. Some types of fractures to the lower jaw may lead to the blockage of air. In addition, when a patient is bleeding from a facial injury, the airway may be compromised. Therefore, in these situations, treatment is extremely important as if these situations go unrecognized, they can quickly lead to death. Heading to the emergency room is the first step. Following up with a specialist may be necessary to ensure safety to life.
Patterns and Characterization of Facial Fractures
Frontal bone fracture - The frontal bone protects the frontal lobes of the brain that is responsible for motor function, language, impulse and control, judgement and memory. The frontal sinus lays between two layers (outer and inner) of the frontal bone. The concerns with this type of fracture are: in the contour of the forehead and the brain. Management of this type of fracture should be handled with precaution as it can result in mucoceles and meningitis. Mucoceles is a condition in which a buildup of mucus expands in an un-drained sinus. On the other hand, meningitis is an infection of the outer lining of the brain.
Orbital fractures - The orbit in this case refers to the bony orbit that houses the eyes. This orbit is also made up of 7 bones. These bones can fracture as a group or as a fracture complex. The concerns: vision, eye movement and malposition of the globe.
Nasal fractures - Given the central location and projection of the nose in addition to the fact that it has the lowest impact resistance, the nasal bones are the most commonly fractured bones of the face. These fractures are usually found in isolation. The concerns: ability to ventilate and temperature and humidity control of inspired air.
Fractures of the mid-face - These are also called Le Forte fractures, happen to the mid-face and are categorized in three ways:
- Le Forte I -- a split of the maxilla along a horizontal line below the nose. This fracture results in a floating palette of the fractured bones separating them from the rest of the facial bones. This fracture also interferes with the alignment of the teeth.
- Le Forte II -- a pyramidal split of the maxilla above the nasal bridge, resulting in the displacement of the nasal pyramid.
- Le Forte III -- also called craniofacial disjunction whereby the fracture is through the lateral orbital wall along the orbital floor including the nasal bridge. This fracture results in face asymmetry.
Malar complex fractures - Also known as the cheekbone, more likely to be subjected to a high frequency of fracture given that cheek bones are generally highlighted in the face. The concerns: orbital floor concerns, a flat cheek bone and difficulty in opening the mouth.
Naso-orbito-ethmoid fractures - Also known as NOE fractures. They involve many bones located in the middle of the face including the nose, orbit and ethmoid. NOE fractures result from central impacts to the face. The concerns: loss of nasal height, increase in nasal width, wide-set eyes and if the fracture is severe, a fault line communication with the brain may be opened.
Panfacial fractures - This fracture involves the entire face and results in multiple fractures. In the past, patients of panfacial fracture died. However, with the increase of technology and sophisticated trauma centers, mortality rates from this fracture type have decreased.
Mandibular fractures - These consist of disruptions of the bones of the lower jaw. The concerns: malocclusion, trismus, joint dysfunction and restricted or painful opening of the mouth.
Facial Fracture Trauma Auto Injury Attorney
There is a physical, psychological and social consequences to facial trauma. On the physical or functional side, the face is the center for vision, speech, eating and breathing. On the psychological and social side, it is the center for self and social image and self-identity. Facial trauma may not be deadly or perhaps not life threatening, but it may be detrimental to one’s marriage, family or career.
Anyone with a family member or friend who is involved in an accident causing any of the condition should consider consulting with an attorney immediately. These serious and often life threatening facial injuries are life-altering, creating the need for extensive emergency and plastic surgery. A Facial Fracture Trauma Auto Injury Attorney helps pay for needed treatment and for medical bills, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. The Napolin Law Firm is available to speak to anyone concerned about their own health or a loved one's health after an automobile accident, for free. We offer free case evaluations and take cases with no money up front, promising that you will only pay if we recover a win!