Figures show about 3 million people in the United States get injured in vehicle crashes yearly. Injuries commonly occur from the crash impact or getting penetrated by debris. Drivers in California should be aware of some common vehicle crash injuries.
Soft tissue injuries
Soft tissue injuries are the most common injury after motor vehicle accidents, which damage muscles, tendons, and ligaments. These types of injuries often occur suddenly and overextend the muscles, causing pain, stiffness, and swelling.
Whiplash causes the neck to jerk hard and rapidly back and forth, commonly causing headaches and decreased movement. A contusion is another common soft tissue injury, which is a bruise from damaged blood vessels or capillaries, commonly discoloring the area.
A herniated disk damages the jelly-like structures between the vertebra. The structures may push on the spine and cause weakness, leg, back, foot or arm pain, tingling and burning.
Several types of fractures may occur anywhere along the spine after a vehicle crash, resulting in partial or complete breaks. A type of spinal fracture is a compressed fracture, which occurs when the front part of the spine collapses, but not the back.
Traumatic brain injury
A TBI disrupts the normal brain function from blunt force trauma, such as hitting the dashboard or steering wheel. A TBI ranges from mild that can heal in several weeks to moderate or severe needing ongoing treatment.
A concussion is commonly a mild TBI, commonly causing dizziness headaches, balance issues and vision problems with or without losing awareness. A severe TBI includes diffuse axonal injury, which causes the brain to shift inside the skull, damaging nerve fibers.
Injured parties should know adrenalin may disguise symptoms for several hours or days. Getting immediate medical attention is important for health and to use as proof of injury in litigation.