“I felt fine immediately after the accident. I didn’t feel the pain until a few days after the accident.”
Sound familiar? Many victims of car accidents fail to seek medical treatment after a collision because they don’t notice any pain. Some suffer severe injuries, but only feel the symptoms several days following the accident. As a result, insurance companies may claim that the victim is exaggerating and the car accident did not cause their injuries.
Symptoms to Look Out For
If you’ve been involved in an accident, you should always seek medical attention as soon as possible. When a doctor examines you shortly after your collision, your injuries are more likely to be identified early.
Following are common symptoms that may manifest hours or even days after the actual accident.
- Headaches. Headaches following a car accident are often a symptom of a concussion, blood clot or other brain injuries. Take precautions to ensure that you do not expose yourself to further injuries until the first injury has healed.
- Shoulder and neck pain. The neck is not designed to withstand the force of a car crash. When a crash occurs, the head is thrown back and forth violently. This results in damage of the muscles, nerves, ligaments and even the discs in the neck. The pain resulting from this type of injury can take hours or even days to manifest. Victims may experience pain or stiffness.
- Pain in the abdomen. There are various organs located in the abdomen. When these are damaged, they can result in internal bleeding, which is a life threatening condition. Bruises that seem superficial may actually be an indication of an injury that runs much deeper.
- Pain or numbness in the back or leg. Car accidents can result in straining of the ligaments or muscles in the back or legs. Serious accidents can result in ruptured discs or the application of pressure on a nerve (especially the sciatic nerve). Victims may experience nerve damage that can result in numbness, weakness or shooting pains in the leg, feet, buttocks and groin.
- Cognitive dysfunction. Have you noticed changes in speech, judgment, sleep patterns, mood, vision, coordination or behavior in general? These subtle signs following a car accident are often a symptom of brain injury. The symptoms may be as subtle as just a feeling of being off.
Having a medical examination immediately after an accident can help to identify injuries that are not obvious. Additionally, you should know that Atlanta auto accident attorney Laurie Robbins often represents people with injuries that did not become apparent until days or weeks after the motor vehicle collision.