2 Most Commonly Unreported Injuries from Auto Accidents
As a personal injury attorney in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, I see more than my share of life’s tragedies. I have to say though, that some of the worst are when someone has suffered a life-altering injury and is left with little hope of making a recovery simply because they didn’t realize they had been hurt early enough.
Two of the most common and severe types of injuries that are unreported injuries are herniated disc and traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Both involve the kind of damage that can be difficult to detect in its early stages but can have a dramatic impact on your quality of life for the rest of your days.
You can think of your spine as a stack of jelly donuts with saucers sitting between each one. The saucers are the actual bones and the donuts are the discs. Their purpose is to add flexibility to your spinal column and act as shock absorbers and prevent damage to the sensitive nerves that run up and out of the center of your spine. A herniated disc occurs when either the impact is more than the disc can withstand or at such an angle that it causes them to shift out of position.
In severe cases, this can lead to a ruptured disc where the outer casing of the donut is damaged to the point that it ruptures releasing the shock absorbing jelly inside. In minor cases, the disc will shift ever so slightly but will then continue to move out of line until it reaches a critical juncture.
Traumatic Brain Injuries
The way that the human head is constructed is key to understanding traumatic brain injuries. Without going into too much detail, your brain is like overly thick Jell-O. It floats in cerebrospinal fluid or CSF inside nature’s protective crash helmet, your skull.
In a car accident, the majority of brain injuries occur when the head shifts direction to quickly for the shock-absorbing CSF to compensate and the brain strikes the hard bone that is supposed to be protecting it. This can result in many different types of brain injuries ranging from a simple concussion to a TBI.
A few of the symptoms of TBI to watch for are:
- Unequally dilated pupils
- Memory problems
- Loss of consciousness
- Loss of concentrating
- Light or noise sensitivity
- A headache
- Drowsiness or fatigue
- Dizziness and problems balancing
- Depression, irritability, anxiety or other mood swings
- Confusion or disorientation
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Blurred vision or tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
While some of these may be apparent shortly after the accident, many like changes in sleep patterns and mood swings may not manifest themselves for quite some time.
The biggest issue with either of these two types of unreported injuries is that you can sustain damage that produces little to no outward sign when sustained. If left ignored though, they can become progressively worse until they greatly impair your ability to function in a meaningful way. Herniated discs can worsen until the nerves in your spine are damaged and TBIs can leave you mentally impaired for the rest of your life.
The best hope for a successful recovery from either lies in early diagnosis and treatment. So, let me stress once again that if you have been involved in any type of accident it is imperative that you seek medical attention immediately and report any and all symptoms, no matter how minor to your healthcare provider.
If you or a loved one are involved in an accident due to the negligence of another party, you should consider hiring a personal injury attorney. Contact one of our experienced attorneys at Thompson Law. We offer clients a free case evaluation and will help you get the proper medical treatment and compensation for your suffering. Call us anytime 24/7 at 844-308-8180.
- I am a personal injury attorney, not a medical professional. The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only. It is based on personal experience and research into commonly unreported injuries.
- Anytime you are involved in an accident, regardless of its nature, you should seek professional medical attention at the earliest possible opportunity.