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Signs of a Delayed Injury After a Car, Truck or Motorcycle Accident

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Not all injuries are readily apparent after a motor vehicle accident. Some injuries are hard to detect because they are not visible from the outside–internal bleeding, organ damage, etc. Some are difficult to identify because they affect our perception, such as concussions. Other injuries (or at least their symptoms) may simply not arise until hours or days after an accident, even though they were caused by the crash. If you were in a serious car, truck or motorcycle accident, you could have any number of injuries, even if you feel relatively healthy immediately after the accident. It’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible after a crash and keep a watchful eye on your health in the days and weeks following to ensure you do not leave a latent injury untreated. Read on for a discussion of some of the injuries that can appear in the hours, days, or weeks after an accident. Reach out to an experienced San Francisco motorcycle accident attorney if you’ve been in a crash in the Bay Area.

Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) refers to injuries caused by sudden, intense blows to the head. TBI can range from a minor concussion to serious damage leading to cognitive difficulties, personality changes, and coma. If you experience any of the following symptoms after an accident, see a doctor immediately:

  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Difficulty sleeping, or sleeping too much
  • Sudden mood changes
  • Vision problems
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Memory problems

A headache could be a symptom of anything from a concussion to whiplash, a blood clot, or a brain bleed. If left undiagnosed and untreated, the injury could lead to permanent and even fatal damage.

Neck and Shoulder Troubles

Car accidents often lead to sprains, strains, and tears in the muscles, joints, and ligaments. Damage to the soft tissue in your neck and shoulders may not be readily apparent immediately after an accident, but if you experience limited mobility, numbness, tingling, pain, or stiffness in the days following an accident, you could have suffered serious harm. Neck and shoulder stiffness may indicate that you suffered whiplash, a dislocated joint, a rotator cuff injury, a muscle tear, or any of a number of other soft tissue injuries. Ignoring the symptoms could lead to the injury becoming much worse, and you may have trouble proving that the injury occurred as a result of the accident. See a doctor for a diagnostic test such as an X-ray, MRI, or CT scan.

Back Pain

A car accident can lead to whiplash, injury to the spine, herniated discs, misaligned vertebrae, pinched nerves, muscle sprains, or other damage to the spine. Back pain that arises hours or days after an accident can be a symptom of any of these conditions, and it can worsen over time. Chronic back pain can be debilitating in its own right, in addition to the functional limitations it can cause. Talk to a proper medical expert in order to avoid exacerbation of any conditions.

Abdominal Pain

Stomach pain is one of the most dangerous symptoms to identify after a crash. Abdominal pain may be a sign of internal bleeding, organ damage, and other serious conditions. Internal bleeding and organ damage can be life-threatening if left untreated, so see a doctor as soon as possible if you are experiencing abdominal pain after a motor vehicle accident. Watch out for other related symptoms as well including, purple bruising, tingling, dizzy spells, and nausea.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Not all harm suffered in a crash is physical. Serious car, truck or motorcycle accidents, especially those that lead to severe injury, can be psychologically and emotionally traumatizing. It’s important to start obtaining treatment for any mental health issues that arise as a result of an accident. California personal injury law allows you to recover damages for mental health or emotional problems caused by such accidents, as well as purely physical injuries. Look out for any changes in behavior, mood swings, anxiety, depression, or other unexpected mental effects. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health to your overall well-being.

If you have been injured due to negligent driving in San Francisco, contact William E. Weiss for a free consultation at 415-362-6765 ext. 157 or preferably my cell at 415-235-7060. You can email me at william.weiss@gmail.com.

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