After an accident, some injuries may not show up right away. Especially in traumatic car accidents that involve severe impacts, as well as slip and falls that may involve a blow to the head, the actual injuries can show up some time after the accident. In other words, just because you don’t hurt after a car accident, it doesn’t mean you’re not injured. Nevertheless, getting medical attention for your injuries following an accident is a strong piece of evidence when seeking compensation for the financial damages incurred.
If your injuries didn’t show up right away, and you didn’t seek medical attention immediately after the accident, then you still have some legal options. In fact, you can still file and, after successful litigation, win a personal injury lawsuit for injuries that manifested after the accident. However, there are some nuances and standards of New York personal injury law that you should understand in these cases, and it’s critical to acquire the legal help of a professional, experienced, and knowledgeable NYC personal injury attorney.
Injuries That Might Show Up Later
Car accidents, slip and falls, construction accidents, or other type of accidents are generally high-adrenaline affairs, and you may not feel pain in the first minutes after an accident. However, some injuries can take much longer to manifest, and the accident may have been “resolved” before you realized that, actually, you’re seriously hurt. For instance, two types of injuries that may take a while to appear include:
Soft Tissue Injuries That Occur After an Accident — One of the most common forms of “hidden injuries” include soft tissue injuries. Typically, these injuries involve things like torn ligaments and twisted muscles. Perhaps the most common soft tissue injury is whiplash, which refers to an injury in the neck that results when the head is suddenly and forcibly thrown forward and then back. The pain, swelling, and limited mobility of soft tissue injuries may not show up immediately; they can take days, or even weeks, to manifest. Moreover, soft tissue injuries can be difficult to see on an x-ray, which makes them even more difficult to diagnose and document.
Concussions — Another common form of “hidden injury” is a concussion or a brain injury. Following an accident that involves the head, the brain is harmed due to a forceful trauma and impact; symptoms of a brain injury, however, can take days or weeks to start appearing. Some signs to know if you’ve suffered a concussion or a brain injury include:
- Fatigue and a lack of energy
- Sleeping a lot or insomnia
- Inability to concentrate
- Fuzzy thinking
If you exhibit these symptoms following an accident, you may have a concussion and you should seek medical attention.
The Importance of Seeing a Doctor After an Accident
If you feel any level of pain or discomfort following an accident, it’s a good idea to see a doctor right away. Even if you feel fine, you may want to consider a professional opinion. Not only can your doctor best determine the types of injuries you may have, but your doctor can also give you advice on monitoring the symptoms of potential injuries.
From a personal injury lawsuit and insurance point-of-view, if you were injured in an accident and didn’t seek medical attention right away, it’s critical to document the fact that you did seek medical treatment within a reasonable amount of time. At this time, the other driver’s insurance company may contact you and try to get you to sign a release of any claims you might pursue; the insurance company may even offer a settlement to try and get you to sign the release.
Before signing anything, you need to be fully evaluated by your doctor, and you should wait until all injuries have fully manifested themselves. If you do sign a release and some injuries show up later, you might not be able to go back to the insurance company and ask them to pay for medical treatment.
Call the Personal Injury Attorneys at NYC’s Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier, P.C.
At Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier, we are some of the leading personal injury attorneys in NYC, and if you were injured in an accident, even if the injuries didn’t manifest right away, it’s essential to call our Manhattan personal injury law firm as soon as possible. We offer compassionate, diligent, and professional legal counsel and representation, and we have the resources and in-depth knowledge of New York and federal laws to vigorously fight for your interests. For a free, no-obligation consultation with our personal injury lawyers, call Hoffmaier & Hoffmaier today at (212) 777-9400.