Electricity powers our modern world, enabling us to enjoy countless conveniences. However, despite its benefits, both low and high-voltage electricity can cause catastrophic injuries to the human body. In certain situations, electrical accidents can result in multi-system trauma, causing severe injuries and even death. 

The Impact of Electric Shock On The Body

The way in which electricity affects the body is complex and not completely understood by the medical community. Nevertheless, victims of high-voltage electricity can be left with major disabilities.  

In most electrical injuries, the victim is interposed within a circuit. Even at low voltages, these shocks can disrupt the normal functioning of the body’s systems, leading to widespread trauma. When electrical current passes through the body, it can affect the nervous, muscular, cardiovascular, and respiratory systems simultaneously.

Electrical current entering the body typically produces a charring burn wound, whereas the exiting current may destroy tissue in an explosive pattern. Often hands and feet where electricity exited the body are so severely damaged that amputation is necessary. Severe 3rd-degree thermal burns may occur to large portions of the skin if the clothing of the personal injury victim catches on fire during the event.

an electrician on a ladder checking wiring on an apartment

Nervous System Implications from Electrical Accidents

The nervous system is highly sensitive to electrical disturbances. Electric shocks can interfere with the normal transmission of nerve impulses, causing nerve damage, numbness, tingling sensations, muscle weakness, and even paralysis. Severe electric shocks can impact the brain, potentially resulting in seizures, memory loss, and cognitive impairments.

Electricity can have devastating effects on the brain and central nervous system. Often personal injury victims exposed to high voltages can begin to experience severe neurological problems years after an electrical contact. In some cases, victims experience devastating symptoms resembling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease. These symptoms may include permanent memory deficits, severe muscle spasms resembling seizures, muscle atrophy, and even quadri or paraplegia. Many in the medical community believe that this delayed onset of neurological problems occurs because high-voltage electricity changes the body at a cellular level. Cells mutate and begin to die more rapidly, causing the body to essentially decay from the inside out. Common tests such as MRIs and CAT scans cannot show these changes in the body at a cellular level.

How Electricity Affects Other Parts of the Body

Muscular System Complications: The muscular system relies on electrical signals to contract and relax muscles properly. Exposure to electric shocks can disrupt these signals, leading to muscle spasms, contractions, and muscle tissue damage. In some cases, the electrical current can induce uncontrollable movements or render muscles completely immobile.

Cardiovascular Challenges: Electricity can significantly affect the heart and circulatory system. High-voltage electric shocks can cause irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias), leading to cardiac arrest, heart attacks, or other life-threatening conditions. Furthermore, the electrical current can damage blood vessels, potentially causing internal bleeding or impairing blood flow, which can result in organ damage.

Respiratory System Dysfunction: Electric shocks can impact the respiratory system, potentially leading to breathing difficulties or respiratory arrest. Injuries to the chest muscles or the diaphragm, a key muscle for breathing, can occur due to the intense muscle contractions caused by electrical currents. Additionally, severe electric shocks can cause lung damage or respiratory failure, necessitating immediate medical intervention.

Secondary Trauma and Complications: Apart from the direct impact on various systems, electrical accidents can also lead to secondary trauma and complications. Falls, burns, fractures, and other injuries can occur when individuals experience an electric shock and are thrown or fall from heights due to sudden muscle contractions. Additionally, thermal burns caused by the electric current can result in severe tissue damage and the risk of infection.

Impacts of Electrical Injuries

While electricity powers our modern world, it is crucial to recognize its potential hazards. Electric shocks can cause multi-system trauma, affecting the nervous, muscular, cardiovascular, and respiratory systems. The consequences can range from minor injuries to life-threatening conditions, making electrical safety paramount. By raising awareness, promoting safe electrical practices, and ensuring proper training, we can minimize the risks associated with electricity and protect ourselves from its harmful effects.

The Louisiana electrical accident lawyers at Herman Herman Katz understand the seriousness of electricity and how negligence can lead to personal injuries and wrongful death. Electrical injuries can have a significant financial, physical, and emotional impact on a victim and their family. We have the experience to determine the immediate and future costs and financial needs after an electrical accident. We will fight to hold those accountable and seek compensation for electrical injury victims and their families. For more information, contact us at 844-943-7626 or online for a free consultation

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