If you’ve ever slipped off a curb or stumbled while descending the final step on a flight of stairs, you’ve probably laughed it off as ‘not a big deal.’ But while low-level falls don’t always result in severe injuries, they can be surprisingly dangerous — particularly among seniors or those with pre-existing injuries.
Unfortunately, low-level falls are becoming increasingly common. Recent analysis of data from the National Trauma Data Bank suggests that the rate of fatal falls among elderly adults increased by 55 percent between 1993 and 2003. Based on this research, experts believe that 30 percent of adults over 65 years old will suffer an unintentional fall every year. Read on to learn why these falls are so dangerous:
Exacerbating Existing Injuries
Those most impacted by low-level falls are often prone to injury due to their personal accident history. Past traumatic brain injuries are of particular concern; risk of future TBI is three times as high among those who have suffered brain injuries in the past.
According to the National Trauma Data Bank, seniors sustain long-bone fractures at a rate of 53.4 percent after suffering low-level falls — versus a still concerning rate of 33.4 percent for younger individuals. Re-injury is common; research suggests that fractures suffered at a young age significantly increase the risk of subsequent injuries.
Ground-level falls often lead to pelvic fractures. While this a particularly frightening concern for seniors, younger individuals can also be at risk. What’s more, pelvic fractures can lead to other injuries, often due to the proximity of the pelvis to major blood vessels.
No matter the nature of your fall, it is important to seek legal assistance if you believe negligence was at play. Regan Zambri Long PLLC can provide valuable counsel and representation through every phase of the personal injury process.