Being in an auto accident is an unexpected, unsettling event that often leaves Tennessee victims feeling dazed and highly distressed. Many times, the shock of being involved in a catastrophic event can mask the symptoms of injuries, and signs of physical trauma may remain hidden for several hours or days. In addition, the presence of more severe bodily harm may overshadow other problems that may manifest themselves later on or in a more subtle way.
The most common condition that tends to present itself with delayed symptoms is whiplash. The injury occurs at the moment of vehicular impact when the neck and head are violently thrust forward and suddenly backward. The delicate structures of the cervical spine can incur serious harm even during low-speed crashes. People who are experiencing pain or stiffness of the neck after an auto collision should have an X-ray or CT scan in order to rule out fractures or other severe damage.
Other problems that may manifest themselves hours or days after a crash include headaches, back pain and internal injuries. Headaches can occur due to concussions or more serious problems such as blood clots that have formed and traveled from other regions in the body. Spinal injuries such as ruptured discs, sprains and strains can cause back discomfort, and gradual abdominal swelling may indicate a slow bleed from an internal injury.
Victims of car accidents that have been caused by the negligence of another driver may be able to receive compensation for their medical expenses through a personal injury lawsuit filed with the assistance of an attorney against the at-fault motorist. In addition to medical costs, damages that are often sought in such an action can include lost wages as well as pain and suffering.