In any type of car crash, you have the potential to suffer a variety of injuries. While traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, whiplash and lacerations are often immediately identifiable, damage to your spleen may be harder to detect. Unfortunately, if you do not seek emergency medical treatment after an automobile collision, a spleen rupture may either be fatal or lead to significant medical complications. 

Your spleen is an internal organ on the left side of your body. Part of your body’s immune system, the spleen filters blood and traps potentially dangerous bacteria. It does not, however, have nerve cells. Because you may feel no pain even if you have a serious spleen injury, it is important to seek a full medical evaluation following a car crash. 

Causes of spleen damage 

There are a few different ways to damage your spleen. Nonetheless, the Mayo Clinic notes that blunt-force trauma is the most common cause of spleen injuries. During a car crash, your body may hit a fixed object in your vehicle, such as your seat belt or steering wheel. Alternatively, a loose item may become a projectile, colliding with your midsection during a car crash. Put simply, you must realize that you do not have to have a puncture wound to seriously injure your spleen. 

Symptoms of a spleen injury 

If your spleen’s outside membrane ruptures, you may have serious internal bleeding. As such, you must recognize that possible spleen damage is a medical emergency that requires immediate attention. While the symptoms of spleen injury vary, you should recognize some common ones: 

  • Abdominal pain 
  • Shoulder pain 
  • Dizziness 
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting 
  • Confusion 

The only way you can know whether you have suffered a spleen injury is to undergo a medical examination. That is, you should not wait for symptoms to appear. Nonetheless, by understanding the causes, symptoms and urgency of this type of injury, you boost your odds of recovering completely after a collision.