After a serious accident, many victims suffer from what are known as internal injuries. This umbrella term applies to a variety of ailments inside the human body, several of which are outlined below.
It’s common for accident victims to do a self-assessment after an incident. You may be looking for any damage done to your body or sense any pain. Doctors and medical professionals are trained to do these checks, but many times the more serious damage is done underneath the skin.
What is Internal Bleeding?
One of the most common types of internal injuries you will see after an accident is internal bleeding. While external bleeding is easy to recognize and treat, internal bleeding happens underneath the skin when blood vessels or organs are damaged. That blood loss within the body is serious.
Some internal bleeding can stop on its own. In more severe cases, these injuries require immediate attention and surgery to fix.
Internal bleeding is typically caused by blunt trauma. Common examples include car accidents, pedestrian accidents, motorcycle/bicycle accidents, etc. Additionally, internal bleeding might also occur in penetrating trauma, when a foreign object enters the body.
Other Types of Internal Injuries from an Accident
Of course there are other types of internal injuries that result from an accident. Some are more serious than others, and require varying levels of treatment and rehabilitation.
- Broken ribs: This type of injury usually heals on its own, but it can be a time consuming and painful process. Broken ribs may also damage blood vessels and/or puncture a lung, requiring emergency medical attention.
- Brain bleeding: A brain bleed is severe and should be treated immediately. Bleeding on the brain can result in oxygen not getting to parts of the brain, causing permanent damage if not attended to.
- Abdominal aorta aneurysm: When the stomach is crushed in an accident, the abdominal aorta can break/rupture. This typically results in death.
- Pneumothorax: A punctured lung that collapses can flood the chest cavity with air, causing pneumothorax.
- Liver damage: Severe trauma can cause serious damage to the liver. This vital organ must be repaired promptly and properly, and if not, can be considered fatal.
- Kidney damage: This type of injury typically is a result of an impact to the flank or lower back. Life-changing kidney injuries can result in dialysis or a transplant operation.
- Spleen damage: This organ contains disease-fighting blood cells that fight off bacteria. If the spleen is ruptured, this blood flows into the abdominal cavity and may be fatal.
Internal injuries should be treated with the utmost care and attention. Seeking treatment immediately after an accident should be your No. 1 priority.
Treatment for Internal Injuries
The reality of internal injuries is that they may not present themselves or show symptoms immediately after the accident. And even if they do exhibit symptoms, you may not realize you have an internal injury or realize how bad the injury is until things are very serious.
It is extremely important, again, that you receive medical attention after any and all accidents. There is no downside to getting checked out, and sometimes these precautionary visits find internal injuries that weren't obvious. Plus, if you don’t get treatment for your internal injuries, your health situation may become worse.
If you’ve suffered internal injuries in an accident caused by someone else, the treatment, lost wages, and pain and suffering should be paid for by the person responsible for the accident. That generally means that the at-fault person’s insurance company will pick up the bill. However, things aren't usually that easy.
In many cases, the insurance company will contest your claim and deny you coverage. They may offer lowball settlement amounts or contest your medical bills, claiming the injuries are not legitimate. This unfortunate scenario places a great deal of power in the hands of the insurance company. Therefore, it is important to have someone on your side fighting for your rights.
Legal Rights After an Accident
Internal injuries are some of the most serious types of accident injuries. At Seattle-based Davis Law Group, P.S., our Washington state injury lawyers have extensive experience representing clients who have sustained serious internal injuries in car wrecks, motorcycle accidents and pedestrian crashes.
You deserve to be compensated for your injuries. Do not assume that you have no other option than to try to handle it on your own. We are willing to fight for your rights and investigate the specifics of the accident to determine what happened and what went wrong.
For a free case evaluation with an attorney, contact us today. Call (206) 727-4000, use the chat feature below or fill out the form on this page to get started.