You must take several steps following a car accident, particularly if you have serious injuries. One of the most important steps is to seek immediate medical attention, even if your injuries seem relatively minor. The shock of the accident can cause adrenaline to course through your body, which often masks the pain associated with an injury. However, choosing not to be examined by a medical professional can harm your legal claim and health.
There are many reasons why a medical professional should thoroughly examine you after any type of car accident, including the following:
- They can immediately check for severe injuries that may not be obvious. Whether you are not experiencing any pain due to the adrenaline rush or have an underlying injury that does not become symptomatic until later, a healthcare professional can diagnose the injury and recommend the proper course of treatment.
- They can ensure you are mentally and emotionally stable after the car accident, particularly if you suffered or witnessed a severe or catastrophic injury.
- They can ensure that your injuries are documented and that there is an official medical report that can be used as evidence in a personal injury lawsuit.
Ultimately, the longer you wait to seek medical attention, the more likely the negligent party will claim that you did not suffer any injuries or that your injuries must not be severe if you did not think it was necessary to get medical attention. The other motorist may also argue that your injury could have been caused by another event besides the car accident.
What Are My Options if I Did Not Get Medically Evaluated After an Accident?
While it is always in your best interest to be medically examined after an accident, you may still pursue a personal injury claim if you did not seek medical attention for your injuries. However, filing an insurance claim and recovering financial damages may be more complicated. A dedicated car accident lawyer can thoroughly explain your options and assist you with the claims process.
Assuming you can prove that the other driver was responsible for causing the accident, your medical expenses associated with the accident are generally recoverable damages. That means you may be compensated for the following:
- Ambulance transportation to the hospital
- Emergency department visit
- Doctor’s visits
- Prescription medications
- Ongoing treatment and care
- Future medical expenses associated with the injury
What Are Examples of Injuries That Do Not Appear Right Away?
Certain injuries may not show symptoms in the minutes or hours after the accident. One common example is whiplash, a neck injury that occurs when the force of the impact suddenly causes the person’s head to be jolted backward and forward. Generally, motorists recover from whiplash within a few weeks if they follow a recommended treatment plan. However, without the proper treatment, whiplash can cause chronic pain and other complications.
Another type of injury that can appear days or weeks after the accident includes concussions, which occur when the impact causes the brain to be shaken or jolted. The symptoms may not appear to be severe or life-threatening. Still, a healthcare professional should examine all head injuries following a car accident.
In extreme cases, a car accident can cause a traumatic brain injury (TBI), ranging from mild to severe. A mild TBI is generally considered a concussion. A severe TBI can have serious, long-term consequences that require ongoing medical care. The following are common symptoms of a severe TBI:
- Behavioral changes, including increased irritability and mood swings.
- Clear fluid leaking from the ears or nose.
- Locked-in syndrome, which means the person cannot move or speak.
- Losing consciousness or going into a coma.
- Nausea or vomiting that does not go away.
- One dilated pupil.
- Open head wound.
- Seizures or convulsions.
- Severe headaches that do not go away or worsen.
- Short-term memory loss.
- Slurred speech.
Loveland Ohio Car Accident Lawyers at Wolterman Law Office Represent Clients Who Have Been Injured in Crashes
If you suffered an injury in a car accident, our Loveland Ohio car accident lawyers at Wolterman Law Office can assist you with the claims process and pursue the financial compensation you deserve. To schedule a free consultation, call us at 513-488-1135 or contact us online. Located in Loveland, Ohio, we serve clients in Hamilton County, Fairfield, Norwood, and Forest Park.