Individuals who work in jobs that require the use of heavy machinery, including vehicles, are at risk of suffering a crushing injury. Medline Plus reports that a crushing injury occurs when a body part becomes trapped and squeezed under or between heavy objects and that such incidents usually cause serious damage to the trapped appendage or body area.
Such an injury can cause serious complications for days or even months after the occurrence, and those affected may want to monitor the damage carefully for signs of trouble to avoid long-term problems or a delay in healing.
1. Nerve issues
A crushing injury can damage the nerves in any affected area. Those injured may notice tingling, numbness or trouble with balance or holding objects. Nerve damage may also cause twitching around the location of the injury. Any worker who notices these problems may want to report them to a doctor immediately.
2. Compartment syndrome
Crushing injuries often cause damage inside the affected area and affect the muscles, tissue and bone. While breakage might occur in a bone depending on the weight or pressure of the objects involved, damage to the bone, nerves and surrounding tissue may all experience serious damage as well, causing compartment syndrome. This could result in a limited range of motion if the arms, legs or shoulders became involved in the injury.
Because most crushing injuries can cause open wounds, infection is usually the most common issue for their victims. This issue may result in slow healing, fever and swelling in the injured area.
Many crushing injuries may require surgery and other medical assistance directly after the incident, especially in cases where heavy machinery or work-grade vehicles caused the damage.