Intraabdominal Injuries Associated with Lap-Shoulder Belt Usage 930639

The “seat belt syndrome”, first described in 1961, identified abdominal organ injuries related to the use of the lap belt. Many articles have further documented detailed descriptions of intraabdominal lap belt related trauma. Lumbar spine distractions were later added to this injury list. Lap belt injury literature not infrequently hypothecates that some, if not all, of these seat belt syndrome injuries would be prevented, eliminated, or at least significantly reduced in frequency by the use of lap-shoulder belts.
This report, based on data from crash investigations, documents lap-shoulder belt intraabdominal injuries occurring by belt loading alone, without significant intrusion and without significant dynamic flexing of the torso of the restrained front seat occupant.


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