After a car accident, you might think that you don't have injuries and feel relieved that you don't have to deal with any inconvenience beyond the damage to your vehicle. While this is possible, there is still a very real possibility that you have serious injuries, even if you don't feel any pain.
Car accidents are generally much more violent than we realize, and often leave victims with delayed onset injuries. These injuries do not cause pain initially, and may not cause any symptoms for hours or even days. Unfortunately, when the injuries do eventually cause pain, they are typically worse. In some instances, delayed pain injuries are even fatal.
If you recently experienced a car accident, you should seek out a complete medical examination as soon as possible. Not only can this help identify potentially life-threatening injuries, the medical documentation your exam produces is essential for building a strong personal injury claim later on.
Potentially fatal injuries
Most delayed pain injuries are not life threatening. Unfortunately, both internal bleeding and damage to internal organs are often fatal if left undiagnosed and untreated. If an organ suffers damage but can still function, then a victim may not feel any pain, but if the body cannot heal the organ, then the organ will get shut down. When one organ fails, the rest of the organs follow, and this is very painful.
Internal bleeding presents two potential threats. If internal bleeding is significant, a victim may lose consciousness without warning and the blood loss may be deadly. On the other hand, if the site of the blood loss is small, then it may only cause pain once an infection sets in.
Infection is likely without proper care, and once an infection grows large, it will travel throughout the body to every organ. This is also deadly and painful. Due to the serious nature of these injuries, everyone who experiences a car accident should seek proper medical care as soon as possible.
Even injuries that are not fatal may still cause long-term or severe pain and disability. Once they do cause pain, they may affect a victim's ability to work or may even affect relationships.
A blow to the head may not cause any symptoms for up to two weeks, but once symptoms occur, they often change the victim's personality and interpersonal skills. This can prove devastating to a career.
Similarly, nerve or spinal column damage may not cause pain for days, only to come on suddenly. This may completely disable the victim, or may cause ongoing pain that might have been avoided with a timely exam.
Don't wait to take steps to protect yourself. Proper medical care and a strong legal strategy can help you avoid unnecessary pain and suffering while keeping your rights secure.