When a motorcyclist experiences sharp pain and swelling in the thigh after a crash, it could be due to a broken femur or a femoral shaft fracture.
This is among the most serious types of injuries motorcyclists can suffer, and it is important to seek immediate medical help.
Our Chicago motorcycle accident lawyer explains that femur fractures are not common. They occur at a rate of just one case per 10,000 population annually. In people younger than 25 years and older than 65 years, the incidence increases to 3 cases per 10,000 population annually. These injuries are more common among young males, and the incidence increases in elderly patients.
The femur is the longest bone in our body, and its proximal end, known as the femoral head is connected to the pelvic bones. Its distal end forms the knee joint along with the tibia and fibula bones in the lower leg.
Femur fractures can be of various types depending on its location and severity. Some of the most common symptoms of a femur fracture can be felt in the area of the fracture in the thigh. If accompanied by a multi-system injury or severe blood loss, it can be life threatening. Common symptoms include:
- Intense pain in the thigh
- Internal bleeding or bruising on the thigh
- Inability to move the thigh
- Deformity of the thigh
- Tingling or numbness
- Spasms of the thigh muscles
- Swelling of the leg
If the femur fracture is life threatening, there will likely be additional signs and symptoms including:
- Uncontrollable bleeding
- Low blood pressure
- Confusion or loss of consciousness
- Inability to move the leg
- Extreme pain in the thigh
- Fragments of bone protruding through the skin
Types of femur fractures
There are three types of femur fractures that can result from motorcycle crashes. These include:
Femoral shaft fracture: It is the most common type of femur fracture that results from high speed collisions, because the femoral shaft is the longest portion of the thighbone. When this fracture occurs, doctors insert a metal rod into the thighbone to secure ends of the bone together. It is considered a severe injury.
Proximal femur fracture: Also known as femoral neck fracture, it affects the highest portion of the thighbone adjacent to the hip joint. Treatment includes the use of surgical hardware such as plates and screws, and in some cases a hip arthroplasty.
Supracondylar femur fracture: This occurs just above the knee joint, and usually involves a cartilage injury to the knee as well. It is a rare form of femur fracture, and often occurs in people who have severe osteoporosis or have had a total knee replacement. Treatment involves the use of plates, screws, cast, brace, external fixator or intramedullary rod.
Femur fractures often require extensive and long term treatment. These injuries are very expensive to treatment, especially if surgery is required. Victims should seek legal help from an experienced Chicago personal injury lawyer. The team at Willens Law Offices has a proven track record of success. Give us a call today at (312) 957-4166 for a free case evaluation.