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Motor Vehicle Collision: Seat Belt Contusion Or Abrasion


Seat belts are life-saving in the case of a severe car accident. However, if your body was thrown forward against the seat belt, a bruise or abrasion may appear on your neck, chest or abdomen.

Your exam today does not reveal any sign of internal injury below the bruise. However, because of the strong forces involved in a car accident, it is important that you watch for any new symptoms that might be a sign of hidden injury.

Home Care:

  1. A car accident can be emotionally upsetting. Take time for yourself to rest and adjust to what has happened. Talking to others about your feelings can help reduce anxiety and fear.

  2. It is normal to feel sore and tight in your muscles the following day. However, more severe pain should be reported.

  3. You may use acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) to control pain, unless another pain medicine was prescribed. [NOTE: If you have chronic liver or kidney disease or ever had a stomach ulcer or GI bleeding, talk with your doctor before using these medicines.]

Follow Up

with your doctor or this facility as directed by our staff.

[NOTE: If X-rays were taken, they will be reviewed by a radiologist. You will be notified of any other findings that may affect your care.]

Get Prompt Medical Attention

if any of the following occur:

  • Headache or visual problems

  • New or worsening neck, back, chest or abdominal pain

  • Shortness of breath or increasing chest pain

  • Repeated vomiting, dizziness or fainting

  • Swelling of the abdomen

  • Blood in the vomit, stool (red or black color), or urine (pink or red color)

  • Excessive drowsiness or unable to awaken as usual

  • Confusion or change in behavior or speech

  • Fever of 100.4ºF (38ºC) or higher, or as directed by your healthcare provider


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