When you are involved in an accident, you might expect to feel symptoms right away if you have been injured. But, while this is often the case, it is also possible for various symptoms to be delayed.
There are a few reasons why: First, after an accident, your adrenaline is pumping, and this can mask many of the common symptoms of traumatic injuries. It may also be the case that your brain is so preoccupied with other things that you simply do not notice your symptoms right away. Second, the symptoms of certain types of traumatic injuries do not manifest immediately. Third, the effects of internal injuries can worsen over time, so it might be the case that you do not notice an injury immediately, but instead, only after it progresses.
10 Common Delayed Symptoms Following Vehicle Collisions and Other Accidents
What kinds of injury symptoms can be delayed? Here are 10 common examples of delayed symptoms that may indicate the need for medical treatment:
Headaches that onset in the days or weeks following an accident may be a symptom of a concussion or other form of traumatic brain injury (TBI). However, headaches can be symptomatic of various other injuries as well, and it will be important for you to carefully describe all of your symptoms to your treating physician.
2. Neck or Shoulder Pain
Delayed neck and shoulder pain can be symptomatic of various traumatic injuries as well. This includes whiplash (which is actually a collection of injuries to the spine and neck), soft tissue damage, nerve damage, and potentially even a fractured clavicle or other bone.
3. Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain with delayed onset after an accident may be a symptom of a herniated or ruptured disc, a lumbar sprain or strain, spondylolisthesis, and various other spinal cord injuries. While accident victims of all ages can experience back injuries, older victims may be at particular risk for spinal cord injuries due to disc degeneration.
4. Abdominal Pain
Delayed abdominal pain is often a sign of internal bleeding or internal organ damage (e.g., an injury to the stomach or spleen). However, it could also be symptomatic of injuries ranging from abdominal muscle damage to a neurological disorder caused by TBI.
5. Limited Mobility or Range of Motion
Limited mobility and limited range of motion are common delayed symptoms after traumatic accidents. If you are experiencing a limited range of motion in your back, shoulders, arms, hands, legs, or feet, this is most likely symptomatic of a sprain, strain, or tear, though there are other possibilities as well.
6. Numbness or Tingling
Numbness and tingling are most commonly signs of nerve damage, and they can be delayed if they are either (i) masked by other symptoms, or (ii) caused by inflammation that worsens after the accident. In many cases, these symptoms will subside over time. However, for some accident victims, medical intervention may be necessary in order to fix the issue and/or prevent permanent damage.
7. Bruising or Swelling
Delayed bruising and swelling can be signs of broken bones, hematomas, and various other traumatic injuries. Once again, if you are experiencing any of these delayed symptoms, it will be important for you to see a doctor promptly.
8. Mood Swings
Mood swings following a traumatic accident could be symptomatic of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a concussion, or another form of TBI. If you notice (or if any of your coworkers, friends, or family members notice) that you do not seem like yourself, this may be a sign of an injury caused by your accident.
9. Anxiety and Depression
Anxiety and depression can also be symptomatic of concussions, but they can also be delayed symptoms of the psychological trauma of being involved in a serious collision or suffering a life-altering injury. These are serious (and diagnosable and treatable) medical conditions. And like all other physical and psychological injuries, they are eligible for financial compensation under New Jersey law.
10. Emotional Distress
Likewise, feelings of emotional distress are common in the aftermath of a serious collision or other accident. If you find yourself feeling anxious or distressed to a more significant degree or under more circumstances than you did prior to your accident, you should seek medical and legal help right away.
Speak with a Highly Skilled Accident Lawyer for Free
Do you have questions about your legal rights after being injured in an accident in New Jersey? If so, we encourage you to contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation.
At Petro Cohen Petro Matarazzo, we take personal injury personally. Our personal injury lawyers have decades of experience in this dynamic practice area and have handled thousands of personal injury cases with successful outcomes for our clients, fighting hard to recover fair compensation and appropriate medical care for their injuries.
Often times, serious personal injuries can be life changing, requiring extended medical treatment and putting a strain on your finances. We believe that your focus should be on getting better. In fact, we will work with you to make sure you are receiving the proper medical treatment, and obtaining the benefits to which you are entitled.
Susan Petro, who heads the Personal Injury Department and is also the Managing Partner of Petro Cohen Petro Matarazzo, along with Rich Gaeckle and Mike Veneziani, will handle your personal injury case, fighting for full and fair compensation in every case they handle.
The PI Team will handle your personal injury needs, including auto injuries, construction litigation, premises liability, slips and falls, product liability, and many other types of cases, with the dedication, respect, and focus you should expect from your legal representation. They take the time to listen carefully to your individual story, working hard to obtain compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.
Regardless of the type of serious injury you face, our team of qualified attorneys is there for you. To speak with one of our experienced accident lawyers in confidence, please call us directly at 888-675-7607 or tell us how we can help online today.
We know you have choices with your legal representation for your serious personal injury. Select Excellence.