Car accidents happen each and every day, doling out many injuries to victims. Some of these injuries may not appear obvious at the scene of the accident, and may not cause pain or discomfort until hours or days after the accident itself.
These injuries, known as delayed onset injuries, can take many forms. In some cases, victims may feel discomfort or pain in their neck and back, or shooting pain in their arms and legs. Other victims may experience disorientation or abdominal pain.
Depending on the type of delayed onset injury people suffer, they may face serious risks to their safety. Even if you think that you did not receive any injuries in an accident, it is usually wise to get yourself checked out by a professional medical care provider. There is a significant chance that you may have injuries you don't know about yet.
Once you seek out medical care, an attorney can help you go over the facts of your injury accident and determine a strong path forward for seeking compensation. If you suffered injuries or losses because of someone else's actions or negligence, you may have grounds for a successful personal injury claim.
Is it an emergency?
The severity of delayed onset injuries can vary significantly. Many of these injuries are quite serious and may cause ongoing pain and even disability if not treated properly and promptly. However, should you experience abdominal pain following a car accident, you should consider it an emergency.
Abdominal pain may mean that you have internal bleeding. Not only are you at very serious risk of losing too much blood internally, internal bleeding also leaves you susceptible to infections entering your bloodstream and traveling throughout your body. You may also feel pain if your accident left you with organ damage. Any organ damage, if left untreated, may lead to organ failure, which is also life-threatening in many cases.
If you feel abdominal pain after an accident, stop what you are doing and go to an emergency room immediately. You may only have minutes or hours before you suffer very serious harm.
Other delayed onset injuries
In most cases, other types of abdominal injuries do not generally present life-threatening dangers. However, many of these injuries can still cause very serious pain and ongoing issues if left untreated.
Common delayed pain injuries include head injuries and mild traumatic brain injuries, neck and back injuries, and spinal cord injuries. A blow to the head can scramble your brain a little and cause long-lasting headaches, nausea and other symptoms that make it difficult to concentrate. A mild brain injury may also change your personality or your mental capabilities, and can last for up to a year.
Injuries to the muscles in your neck, shoulders and back may not express pain immediately, but may leave you virtually unable to move the next day. Similarly, if you suffer damage to your spinal column, you may pinch nerves in your spinal cord, which can cause great pain and discomfort throughout your body, especially in your extremities.
Not matter what kind of injury you have, do not wait to seek proper medical care ass soon as possible.