The types of injuries that can result from a car accident can vary greatly depending on the severity of the accident, where the victim was hit or impacted, and other variables such as age, physical health, and strength. Generally, the more severe an accident, the worse the injuries will be. However, of all of the injuries that occur from car accidents, whether minor or severe, a soft tissue injury tends to be the most common. This is because the soft tissues of the body are more sensitive and can easily be affected, even in a minor fender-bender.
Unfortunately, though they are common, soft tissue injuries can be difficult to prove in a personal injury case after a car accident. For this reason, it is often necessary for injured victims to work with an attorney. With the assistance of a personal injury lawyer, you will be able to protect your rights and more easily prove to insurers or the court that you have been injured and deserve to be compensated for your medical expenses and any other damages.
If you sustain a soft tissue injury and need assistance, our team of dedicated personal injury attorneys can assist you. At Crossen Law Firm, we have years of experience representing Indianapolis car accident victims and helping them get the compensation they deserve.
What Is a Soft Tissue Injury?
Soft tissue injuries happen when the muscles, ligaments, and tendons sustain damage, which often results in pain, swelling, and bruising. Many people consider soft tissue injuries to be minor to mild, but an individual can sustain severe soft tissue damage to the point of permanent damage or impairment.
These injuries are often categorized in one of two ways: acute soft tissue injuries and overuse soft tissue injuries. An acute soft tissue injury is what will occur after a sudden trauma from something like a trip, fall, or a blow to the body.
While an acute injury can happen in various situations, it most often happens as a result of car accidents. Overuse soft tissue injuries, on the other hand, happen from repetitive stress placed on the body from things like sports, work injuries, and even general daily activities.
Common Types of Soft Tissue Injuries from Car Accidents
Again, acute soft tissue injuries are what will most likely occur as the result of a car accident. These can include:
- Sprains: A sprain is an injury that will occur when there is a partial tear or overstretching of a ligament, which is the connective tissue between bones. Ligaments are important because they stabilize and support the joints, so when injured, it can cause severe pain and limit mobility. After a car accident, sprains will most likely affect the ankles, knees, or wrists.
- Strains: Though sprain and strain sound similar, they are not the same. While sprains affect the ligaments, strains affect the muscles and tendons. Similar to a sprain, however, strains tend to occur when the muscles or tendons are torn or overstretched. The back and the leg muscles and tendons are most often affected after an accident.
- Contusions: A contusion, also known as a bruise, occurs when the soft tissues and muscle fibers under the skin are struck by a blow or forceful impact. This results in blood pooling in the soft tissues, which is what causes a bruise to form. While many bruises are considered mild, severe contusions can be painful and take a long time to heal. They can even damage the soft tissues if not properly treated.
- Whiplash: Whiplash is a very specific type of soft tissue injury that occurs when the tissues around the neck are damaged. In a car accident, whiplash occurs when the head and neck snap back and forth, causing the tissues to become overextended. This kind of injury is extremely common after car accidents and can be incredibly painful. Generally, they heal with rest, but they can also lead to complications that can result in long-lasting pain or other symptoms.
Complications with a Soft Tissue Injuries
The trouble with soft tissue injuries is that they are not always immediately apparent, which means injured victims often delay seeking treatment. And in some cases, the initial symptoms may appear to be very mild, which might also cause a person to ignore the injury and dismiss it as no big deal. Unfortunately, soft tissue injuries can get worse over time if they are not properly treated, which can result in complications and even permanent damage.
Recovering Compensation for a Soft Tissue Injury After a Car Accident
To recover compensation for any injury after an accident, you must be able to prove that you were injured. Beyond that, the amount you will be awarded in your personal injury settlement will depend on numerous factors such as the extent of the injury, medical expenses, loss of wages while recovering, physical pain & suffering, and more.
Unfortunately, because soft tissue injuries are not always immediately apparent, they can be difficult to prove. Insurers and courts need factual evidence to decide how much a victim deserves to be awarded, so if there is insufficient medical evidence, it can result in a reduced claim amount that does not fully account for how much the victim is suffering or could suffer from their injury in the future.
This is why it is crucial for injured victims to seek medical attention immediately after the accident, even if you think the soft tissue injury is minor. You never know how the pain or other symptoms could develop over time, so it is essential to have proof that you sought medical treatment right away and to continue seeking treatment and documenting your injury for further proof.
It is also beneficial to work with an attorney. It is not uncommon for insurers to deny claims or reduce settlement amounts. They often make it challenging for victims to recover what they actually need. With an attorney, however, you will have professional representation from someone who will advocate for your rights and do everything they can to prove the extent of your suffering to ensure you get the full amount you deserve.
Consult an Indianapolis Personal Injury Lawyer
At Crossen Law Firm, we have over 20 years of experience fighting for victims of soft tissue injuries from car accidents. We know the challenge in proving these kinds of injuries and know what it takes to ensure our clients’ rights and wellbeing are protected. Our Indiana personal injury attorneys provide compassionate service and will guide you through the legal process every step of the way to help you win your case.
Contact us today or give us a call for a free consultation at (317) 401-8626.