Types of Car Accident Injuries
Bill Allen | November 11, 2020 | Car Accidents
When a vehicle collides with another vehicle or an object, the vehicle stops suddenly. The vehicle occupants continue moving until they are stopped by a safety restraint, or hit another object, such as the steering wheel, dashboard, window, or the vehicle’s frame. Passengers who are not restrained by a seat belt can be thrown around the vehicle’s interior or ejected from the car.
Even though you might be wearing a seat belt and your airbag deploys, you can still sustain severe and catastrophic injuries in a car accident. Despite the advancements in vehicle safety technologies, motor vehicle accidents continue to be a leading cause of death and injury in the United States.
Car accident injuries range from mild to life-threatening. All types of car accidents are capable of producing severe injuries. Some people walk away from terrible crashes with very few injuries, while other individuals sustain traumatic injuries in what might be considered a minor fender bender.
Regardless of the severity or type of car crash, individuals need to take steps after a car accident to protect their health, emotional wellbeing, and legal rights.
Common Car Accident Injuries in Florida
Car accidents include crashes involving motorcycles, passenger vehicles, large trucks, scooters, pedestrians, and bicycles. Some individuals could be at a higher risk of traumatic accidents because of the nature of the crash.
Common types of car accident injuries include:
Traumatic Brain Injuries
Traumatic brain injuries or TBIs range from mild concussions to severe brain injuries. However, do not be fooled by the diagnosis of a “mild” brain injury. All brain injuries should be taken seriously.
TBIs can result in permanent physical, cognitive, and emotional impairments. Brain damage could result in permanent disabilities and impairments. Patients who sustain concussions close together could be at a higher risk of permanent disabilities, just as if they sustained a severe TBI.
Head injuries are also common in car accidents. Victims can sustain a closed head injury, which results in damage to the brain without any outward sign of injury. The brain “bounces” around inside the skull while striking the skull causing damage to one or more locations.
Penetrating head injuries occur when an object penetrates the skull and enters the brain. Accident victims might also sustain skull fractures and internal bleeding in the brain from a head injury.
Back and Neck Injuries
Back injuries, including spinal cord injuries, can result in permanent disabilities. Paralysis and other impairments can prevent a person from returning to work or enjoying the same quality of life as before the car crash.
Back and neck injuries include broken vertebrae, sprains, disc injuries, and nerve damage. Some back and neck injuries could require surgery and intensive therapy.
Whiplash is one of the most common neck injuries in rear-end accidents. It can cause chronic pain and limited range of motion.
Fractures and Broken Bones
Broken bones are common auto accident injuries. Broken arms, wrists, legs, collarbones, ribs, and ankles are common when a car collides with another vehicle or an object.
Many broken bones and fractures heal without surgery or physical therapy. However, some people need surgery to repair the bones, including adding metal plates, screws, and pins. They may need extensive physical therapy to return to a normal lifestyle.
Internal Injuries and Bleeding
Internal injuries and bleeding may not be noticed immediately after a car accident. The victim could begin experiencing symptoms several hours later. However, internal bleeding and damage to organs is a serious car accident injury.
Without treatment, the injury could become life-threatening. A person could lose bodily functions and become dependent on dialysis, breathing tubes, or other medical treatment to stay alive. In severe cases, the person may need a transplant to survive.
Cuts and Lacerations
Cuts and lacerations may not appear serious unless they are deep and do not stop bleeding. However, a victim could develop a life-threatening infection if the wounds are not cleaned and treated. Deep cuts can result in damage to the nerves, muscles, ligaments, and internal organs.
Cars can explode or catch fire after a collision. Burns can cause severe scarring and disfigurement, which could result in infections and life-threatening conditions. Individuals might require numerous surgeries to repair the damage, including reconstructive and plastic surgery.
The Importance of Medical Treatment After a Car Accident
The symptoms of car accident injuries might not appear for a few days. In some cases, the shock of the accident, combined with a rush of adrenaline, can mask injuries. Therefore, it is usually a good idea to be checked by a physician after a car accident.
Medical treatment reduces the risk that a minor injury could turn into something much worse. A doctor might discover an injury that you are unaware of during a physical exam. It also allows you to get back to a regular routine as soon as possible.
However, there is another reason why medical treatment is important after a car accident. You cannot recover compensation for car accident injuries until you can prove that the car accident caused your injuries. The first step in proving that is to document your injuries as soon as possible after the car accident.
Insurance companies use delays in medical care to argue that the car wreck did not cause your injury. It might argue that you are making up the injuries or exaggerating the injuries because you would have sought immediate care after the crash if your injuries had been as serious as you are now claiming.
However, medical records are used as evidence in car accident claims. You have copies of x-rays, MRIs, CT scans, and other diagnostic tests to support your injury claim. Your physicians can also testify about the type of injuries and the severity of injuries caused by the car crash.
Filing Claims for Car Accident Injuries in Florida
You might be able to sue the driver who caused your injury for damages. Damages in a car accident claim can include:
- The full cost of medical care and treatment of your injuries
- The full amount of your lost income, including wages, benefits, salaries, commissions, and bonuses
- Other out-of-pocket costs for personal care, help with household chores, and travel expenses to and from medical appointments
- Physical pain and suffering
- Disfigurement, permanent impairments, scarring, and disabilities
- Mental and emotional distress
- Psychological injuries, including PTSD
The amount of your car accident claim depends on several factors. If you have questions about a car accident claim, ask an attorney. The insurance company is not likely to give you advice that is in your best interest, since it wants to avoid paying the claim.