Seeking immediate medical attention after a traffic accident is essential, especially when you may have suffered arm or leg injuries. Without proper care, these injuries can cause significant pain and discomfort.
Working with a doctor you trust will help you create a treatment plan designed to get you back to your daily routine as soon as possible. Retaining the services of an experienced personal injury attorney can help you seek compensation for accident-related expenses, so you don't jeopardize your financial future due to another party's negligence.
A number of different variables can affect what type of injuries a person suffers in a traffic accident. For example:
- How fast were the vehicles traveling at the time of impact?
- Was the person wearing a seatbelt?
- Did the car have working airbags?
- Was the car hit from the rear, side, or front?
- Was the person facing straight ahead in the seat at the time of impact?
- Was the person a child or a senior citizen?
- Did the person have any preexisting medical conditions?
Car accidents cause a variety of injuries, but serious injuries to the arms, legs, hands, and feet are quite common and can be divided into three general categories: soft tissue injuries, broken bones, and amputations.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Soft tissue injuries often associated with traffic accidents include:
- Bruising. Bruising can be unsightly as well as painful. If the bruising occurs on the foot, a doctor may recommend avoiding activities to speed healing.
- Lacerations. Cuts are often the result of making contact with objects in the vehicle or road debris. Serious lacerations can require stitches, which may lead to scarring. Infection is also a possibility if wounds are not kept clean.
- Sprains. Bruising, pain, and swelling are common signs of sprains. Braces or splints may be needed to limit motion while the injury heals. Serious ligament, tendon, or muscle sprains might require surgery and/or physical therapy. Individuals with these injuries may need to miss work or limit daily activities while they recover.
- Burns. Traffic accident burns can cause disfiguring scars and a potential decrease in mobility if they are located near the joints. Infection is also a concern.
- Torn rotator cuff. When a person uses his arm to brace for the impact of a crash, a torn rotator cuff can result. This type of soft tissue injury is characterized by pain, weakness, and an inability to move the affected arm. Surgery may be required to correct the problem.
Broken bones are sometimes referred to as hard injuries because they involve the loss of continuity in the substance of a bone.
Types of hand and arm fractures associated with car accidents include:
- Humerus fractures in the upper arm
- Distal humerus fractures at the end of the humerus bone near the elbow
- Radius or ulna fractures in one or both of the bones of the forearm
- Olecranon fractures of the bony prominence at the tip of the elbow
- Supracondylar fractures of the upper arm bone slightly above the elbow
- Condylar fractures at the elbow knob
Types of leg fractures associated with car accidents include:
- Calcaneus fractures of the heel bone
- Lateral and medial malleolus fractures in the ankle
- Metatarsal fractures in the top of the foot before the ball
Treatment for broken bones depends on the type and severity of the fracture. A doctor may recommend using screws, plates, and rods to help the injury heal. Crutches and a cast may be required for several weeks, followed by physical therapy.
Permanent nerve damage can result if fractures are not treated properly.
Amputations from vehicle accidents can occur due to crushing injuries, detachment during impact, or infection during the healing process. Amputation of an arm or leg is a life-altering injury that affects every type of daily activity, from getting dressed to preparing meals.
Someone suffering an amputation related to a car accident will need extensive physical therapy to adjust to life with a prosthetic. Counseling may also be needed to deal with the mental health effects associated with this type of injury.
Get the Help You Need to Move Forward
Traffic accidents in the Twin Cities can cause serious injuries, but you don't have to suffer in silence or worry about how to pay for the care you need. You are entitled to compensation from the at-fault driver's insurance company for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Call 763-251-PAIN to receive a referral to a doctor who specializes in treating car accident injuries and a personal injury lawyer who can advocate for your right to a fair settlement so you can focus on moving forward with your life.