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Seat belts helpful in preventing severe liver injury

Every year throughout Mississippi and the rest of the U.S., 2 million car accident patients are sent to emergency rooms. Many of them suffer from internal abdominal trauma, usually incurring injury to the liver and spleen. In mild or moderate injuries, the symptoms are limited to blood clots and shallow lacerations. However, severe cases may require immediate surgery.

It is important to note that the risk for severe liver injury can be reduced by 21 percent if drivers wear their seat belts. This is according to a new study from NYU Langone Hospital-Brooklyn. Researchers studied the 2010 - 2015 crash data from the National Trauma Data Bank, ranking a total of 51,202 cases as involving either mild, moderate or severe injuries. Of the patients who suffered severe liver injury, 15 percent died. In mild and moderate cases, 8 percent of patients died.

Patients who wore seat belts and had working airbags were 26 percent less likely to develop severe liver injuries. While seat belts alone do not prevent liver injuries, their positive effect on the injury severity is clear. Those who neglect to buckle up because they think their airbags are enough to protect them are making a mistake. According to the study, airbags on their own do nothing to reduce injury severity.

Victims of auto accidents who survive liver injuries and other after-effects can consult with a lawyer about filing a claim. That way, they could potentially be reimbursed for medical bills, vehicle damage and other losses. A lawyer may help with the filing and negotiation process.

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