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Aortic Rupture Lawyer


An aortic rupture is a potentially severe and life-threatening condition. Acute ruptured aortic aneurysms and acute aortic dissections are both top causes of mortality in cardiovascular disease. While outcomes after surgical intervention for aortic injury are improving gradually, mortality is still at a high rate. After TBI, aortic rupture is the second top cause of mortality from blunt trauma. Rapid exsanguination, hemorrhagic shock, and death may occur due to the high pressure on blood in the aorta, causing it to escape through a tear. Immediate treatment is essential for survival following a ruptured aorta.

An aortic rupture is a life-threatening injury that may occur from a traffic accident. If you or a loved one sustained a ruptured aorta in a crash, our California personal injury attorneys can seek full compensation on your behalf. Call (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.

Our California personal injury law firm has successfully handled accident cases on behalf of clients since 1982. Our legal team at AutoAccident.com has worked hard to obtain justice and secure maximum compensation on behalf of clients, and we can do the same for you too. When you turn to our attorneys for assistance after a ruptured aorta or aortic dissection from a crash, we will stop at nothing to ensure that a favorable resolution is obtained in your case. Contact us today to arrange a free consultation with one of our skilled aortic injury attorneys to discuss your case.

What are the Types of Aortic Aneurysms?

Aortic aneurysms come in two different types and impact different areas of the body. These include:

  • Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm: Also referred to as AAA, this may occur below the chest. There is a higher incidence of AAAs than thoracic aortic aneurysms. AAAs are typically caused by hardened arteries or atherosclerosis. However, an injury or infection may also cause abdominal aortic aneurysms.
  • Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm: Also known as TAA or heart aneurysm, it develops in the chest and is typically caused by sudden injury or high blood pressure. Patients with connective tissue disorders that are inherited, such as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome or Marfan disorder, may develop TAAs.
What Puts You at Risk of an Aortic Aneurysm?

Diseases and unhealthy lifestyles that cause damage to the blood vessels and heart may also lead to an increased risk of an aortic aneurysm. The risk factors for this condition include:

  • Atherosclerosis
  • Family history of aortic aneurysms
  • Hypertension
  • High blood cholesterol
  • Smoking
What Happens When You Have an Aortic Aneurysm?

An aortic aneurysm is a balloon-shaped bulge occurring in the wall of the aorta. It may rupture or dissect. An aortic rupture refers to an aneurysm completely bursting and causing internal bleeding. Conversely, an aortic dissection occurs when the layers of the artery wall are split due to the pressure of blood pumping and causing blood to leak between the layers.

What are the Common Causes of a Ruptured Aorta?

An aortic rupture may occur for a wide array of reasons. Some of which may include a spontaneous rupture of abdominal or thoracic aortic aneurysms, penetrating trauma, and rapid deceleration causing blunt injury to the aorta. Death is common in aortic rupture cases. This is attributed to the blood being under high pressure in the aorta. This blood vessel is responsible for the delivery of oxygen-rich blood from the heart to the rest of the body.

How Does an Aortic Rupture Cause Death?

During a sudden deceleration causing blunt trauma to the aorta, this injury often occurs near the isthmus. Mortality rates as high as 80 percent are reported in aortic transection cases occurring at the incident site before arriving at a trauma center for immediate treatment. A mortality rate of 30 percent is reported for patients who survive the initial trauma, are treated in an emergency department, and succumb to their injury within 24 hours of hospitalization.

Survival cases typically involve patients that have suffered either non-circumferential or incomplete lesions to the media and intima. In these situations, free ruptures are prevented by the mediastinal pleura and the outermost vessel wall, or the tunica adventitia. Case studies have found that such injuries are often the result of the impacts of high energy. This includes traffic collisions, aircraft wrecks, motorcycle crashes, vehicle versus pedestrian accidents, crush injuries, and serious slip and fall accidents.

Treatments for Aortic Aneurysms

For patients with aortic aneurysms, the two main treatments are medications and surgical management. Hypertension medications may decrease the risk of an aortic aneurysm. Surgical intervention may replace or repair an affected area of the aorta. This will be based on the size or cause of an aortic aneurysm and how quickly it is developing. An aortic aneurysm that causes a dissection or rupture may require emergency surgery, including endovascular aneurysm repair (EVAR) and open surgical repair.

Which Types of Motor Vehicle Crashes Cause Ruptured Aortas?

While injury to the aorta has been often attributed to severe head-on collisions or frontal-impact wrecks, hospital admission data has revealed that other types of car accidents also have a high risk of aortic rupture and injury. Case studies reported that aortic rupture and injury have been found to occur when there is a direct impact to the passenger side of the vehicle, intrusion of the occupant compartment of over 15 inches, and speed of 20 mph or higher.

How Common Are Aortic Rupture Cases in the United States?

According to 2019 data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, aortic dissections or aortic aneurysms caused approximately 9,904 deaths that year. Around 59 percent of deaths attributed to aortic dissection or aortic aneurysm occurred among men in 2019. Roughly 75 percent of all abdominal aortic aneurysm cases reported a history of smoking.

What are the Signs of an Aortic Rupture?

Individuals with abdominal aortic aneurysms may not have any symptoms. However, they may experience a pulsing sensation in the stomach or persistent pain in the abdomen, leg, or back. This is attributed to an aneurysm that may be close to bursting. In cases of abdominal aortic aneurysms requiring immediate medical care, signs may include severe and sudden pain in the legs, lower back, or stomach, fast heartbeat, sweaty skin, fainting, dizziness, vomiting, nausea, and shortness of breath.

The signs and symptoms of a thoracic aneurysm that has dissected or ruptured may include:

  • Dysphagia, or difficulty swallowing
  • Dyspnea, or shortness of breath
  • Hypotension, or low blood pressure
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Pain in the arms, neck, jaw, or chest
  • Sudden and sharp pain in the upper back spreading in a downward direction
What Causes a Thoracic Aneurysm to Rupture the Aorta?

Potential complications of a thoracic aortic aneurysm, or thoracic aneurysm, may include a ruptured aorta or an aortic dissection. An aortic dissection may occur when there is a tear between the aortic wall layers. Aortic dissection or a ruptured aorta may cause sudden death in some cases. Thoracic aneurysms occur less commonly than abdominal aortic aneurysms, those that occur in the lower part of the aorta.

Getting Help from a California Personal Injury Lawyer

A party injured in an accident may be able to bring a claim for damages against the party responsible for the accident and their insurance company. Conversely, it may be possible to file a medical malpractice case against a hospital or clinic where the failed treatment or misdiagnosis of a ruptured aorta or aortic dissection occurred. Medical malpractice claims may also arise from failed follow-up tests, a failure to accurately interpret testing results, and a failure to conduct appropriate tests.

Injured parties or families of decedents will have to prove negligence and demonstrate the other side’s failure was the direct cause of aortic rupture or dissection. A California personal injury attorney can assist with an independent investigation to identify at-fault parties and build a strong case for full financial recovery. Learn how our legal team at AutoAccident.com can help with your aorta dissection or aortic rupture by watching this video detailing our services.

Recoverable Damages in an Accident Case Involving Aortic Rupture or Dissection

When blunt trauma from an accident causes an aortic dissection or ruptured aorta, an injured party may be entitled to non-economic and economic damages stemming from the incident. An injured individual may seek reimbursement for accident-related losses, like medical bills, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and other related damages. After getting injured in a crash, it is essential to retain legal counsel to ensure that you receive full compensation for your injuries and damages.

Contact an Aortic Rupture Attorney Today

An aortic rupture or dissection from an accident is a potentially life-threatening injury. Call our law office today for free, friendly case advice at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. Our legal team is available anytime to listen to your story, help you understand your rights after an accident, and help you seek maximum financial recovery for your damages. We operate on contingency which means you owe us nothing unless we secure a successful result for you through a case verdict or settlement.

Image Credit: By “sasint” via Pixabay

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