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The Law Offices of Frank J. Dito, Jr.

Knee Injury from Car Accident in New York or Staten Island

Frank J. Dito, Jr.
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Car accident, personal injury and workers’ compensation attorney serving Staten Island and Brooklyn New York.

A knee injury from a car accident normally occurs when the exterior of the knee hits some interior part of the car during impact. Usually the impact between the knee and a certain part of the inside of the car is a quick and violent strike causing an injury to the knee.  Common causes for a knee injury from a car accident include if the knee has a sudden and hard impact with the dashboard, door, window or, in some roll over accidents, the roof.  A car accident knee injury may occur from impact alone or may occur because of a severe twisting or a hyperextension of the leg which may result in an injury to the knee. 

Common knee injuries from a car accident are:

  • An injured ACL
  • An injured PCL
  • An injured Meniscus
  • An injured MCL 
Normally knee injuries caused by a car accident are considered a soft tissue knee injury. Soft tissue knee injuries from car accidents, depending on the severity, can cause permanent knee problems, may require surgery and also may require intense physical therapy. 
ACL Tear (Anterior Cruciate Ligament Tear)

An ACL tear from a car accident is considered to be one of severe knee injuries that can be caused by a car accident. The ACL is the ligament that holds the knee joint in place and because this is a major component in the knee a torn ACL may often take a long time to recover and may cause extreme long-term discomfort and pain. 

Symptoms of a torn ACL do not always present themselves immediately but may immediately have other symptoms of an ACL tear because they will experience their knee giving out from under them. Also, often there is a loud pop that occurs when the injury to the ACL occurs. Symptoms that a car accident victim may see within a few minutes to a few hours after a car accident occurs are knee swelling and knee pain.

If you suspect that you have an torn ACL from a car accident you should visit the hospital or your doctor as soon as possible to have the knee evaluated by a doctor and to have an MRI done to check for a tear in the ACL area of the knee.

Depending on the severity of the ACL tear determines what procedure(s) will be used to fix the ACL problem. Some patients require rehab while others may require reconstructive surgery. 

PCL Tear (Posterior Cruciate Ligament Tear)

A PCL tear is when the ligament that is located towards the back of the knee is torn.The PCL helps to maintain the knee's stability and when injured can often cause the person with the PCL injury from a car accident to be unable to walk for extended periods of time. 

Symptoms of a torn PCL include knee pain, swelling, difficulty in range of motion, and sometimes a feeling like their knee is giving out (similar to an ACL tear).

Medical attention for a PCL will allow you to confirm the presence of a PCL tear and will allow you to start attempting to recover from the PCL tear. Often times a PCL tear may heal with just rehab and rest but sometimes a car accident can leave extensive damage to the PCL and it may require surgery. One common sign or needing PCL surgery is if the person with the PCL tear complains of not being able to trust their knee because of the feeling that it may just "give out". In situations such as this reconstructive surgery may be required.

Meniscus Tear

A meniscus tear refers to when the cartilage in the knee is torn. A meniscus tear is a very painful injury because when the cartilage in the knee tears it often leaves the knee with a reduced amount of cartilage in the area of the knee causing an increased amount of friction in the knee joint.

Symptoms of a torn meniscus often include swelling, knee pain, tenderness when pressing on the meniscus, popping or clicking from the knee, limited motion of the knee joint.

When involved in a car accident where a meniscus injury may be present it is important to either have the meniscus area of the knee examined by either a hospital or by your doctor. Test will include a visual evaluation of the knee and often times the doctor will order for an x-ray and MRI to confirm the tear in the meniscus.

Treatment for a meniscus tear often requires a surgical procedure called meniscectomy which involves trimming a portion of the meniscus. Other surgery options may include meniscus repair or meniscus transplantation.

MCL Tear (Medial Collateral Ligament Tear)

An MCL tear affects the area of the knee which controls the knees flexibility. Often times a car accident injury to the MCL will cause severe pain and will prevent the person with the car accident MCL tear from everyday activities and will have extreme trouble walking. 

Symptoms of an torn MCL include severe pain directly over the ligament, swelling, and knee instability. There are three grades which determine the severity of an MCL injury. Often times people with a Grade 1 MCL injury recovery from the injury in 1-2 weeks. Those with a Grade 2 MCL injury usually take about 3-4 weeks to recover. Those with a Grade 3 MCL injury normally take 6+ weeks to recover from the injury in which case rehabilitation may be needed and in some cases surgery to the MCL may be needed.

Compensation for a Knee Injury from a Car Accident
If you were considered to not be at fault in the car accident which caused your knee injury speaking to a personal injury lawyer regarding compensation for your ACL tear, PCL tear, meniscus tear, or MCL tear may be beneficial for you. If the other party was found at fault you may be able to seek compensation from the negligent party to help with the pain and disability from the knee injury.

Those injured in a car Accident in New York may contact our Staten Island injury law firm for more information on knee injury compensation amounts and the process to start a claim or lawsuit against the other driver's insurance company. The amount of compensation will rest upon the severity of your injury and how it will have an effect on you. For a free consultation with Frank J. Dito Jr. Staten Island knee injury lawyer call 718-701-2776 or fill out our online contact form