The fallout of a serious accident seems endless. Not only do you have to worry about potentially fatal injuries to your organs and nervous system, but you may also swiftly lose much of your independence due to arm and leg injuries. While arm and leg injuries are rarely life-threatening or lifelong, they can have serious implications for victims. A broken arm or leg could leave a working adult without income for months, and even a dislocated joint could prohibit lifting and leave parents unable to care for their children.
If you have suffered arm and leg injuries after a car accident, you may be able to seek compensation. Find out now by calling Russell & Lazarus APC at 949-682-3780.
Arm and leg injuries can often be divided into several main types of injuries. Some of the most common injuries after an accident are described below.
A broken leg or arm is a common consequence of a car accident. There are many types of fractures, each with its own likely outcome, recovery period, and treatment options.
Avulsion fractures are the result of muscles or ligaments pulling on bones and separating them. Although the bones themselves are not broken, their displacement is identified as a fracture.
A breaking of the bone that resulted in a shattering into many pieces is identified as comminuted fracture. Such fractures sometimes be set without surgery; however, many comminuted fractures require surgery in the form of open reduction internal fixation in which a plate and screws are used to hold the pieces together as the bone mends.
When a bone collapses due to acute trauma or trauma superimposed on an already degenerated bone, this type of fracture is identified as a compression fracture.
Dislocation fractures occur when one bone of a joint is separated from another bone in a joint. Many dislocations can be reduced by using closed reduction methods.
Hairline fractures are the result of partial fracture of a bone which are sometimes difficult to detect with routine x-rays. They may be more easily identified using CT scans or MRI’s.
An intraarticular fracture is identified when a bone is broken at the surface of a joint.
When a bone is broken along the length of the bone, this is identified as a longitudinal fracture.
An oblique fracture is identified as one in which the bone is broken diagonally in relationship the bone’s long axis.
Bones that have twisted and broken are identified as spiral fractures.
Overall, those with the best outcomes are those with clean, stable fractures. A clean break produces two pieces of bone that have broken off evenly, without any shattered or crushed bits. These breaks often just require a cast, rest, and time. However, many car accident victims suffer more complicated fractures. For example, oblique fractures occur when a bone breaks at an angle. Setting this type of fracture is much more challenging. Comminuted fractures, which happen when a bone breaks into multiple pieces, often require extensive surgery. In any of these cases, a previously healthy individual could be left recovering for months, unable to work or contribute to their household’s daily tasks.
Dislocated joints, while often extremely painful, are one of the least severe injuries you can suffer after an accident. When two bones connected by a joint separate, there is a dislocation. Bones must be put back into place manually, an excruciating procedure that typically must be done under general anesthesia. While victims may be able to return to daily life fairly quickly, they will still have no shortage of medical bills from their treatment.
Your rotator cuffs keep your arms anchored in their respective shoulder sockets. Rotator cuff injuries are relatively common after car accidents, due to the amount of pressure placed on joints during crashes. A rotator cuff injury typically requires extensive surgery to repair, and during recovery, patients cannot move the affected arm at all. As a result, individuals often need to pay for in-home care for help with cleaning, cooking, and simple tasks like getting dressed. Even after the initial four to six week immobilization period, many individuals cannot go right back to work without physical therapy and building back lost muscle.
The arms and legs are filled with nerves that control each limb. Damage sustained during an accident can lead to an inability to use that part of the body. Those who suffer nerve damage often experience numbness, weakness, tingling, pain, or burning in the affected area. Depending on the nerves that were damaged and the extent of the injury, individuals may be left unable to grip items, walk evenly, hold themselves up in a standing position, or raise their arm over their head. In some cases, nerve damage is permanent and cannot be reversed. Treatment options have no guarantee of success and often take months or years to return the limb to full functionality.
An amputation is one of the worst arm and leg injuries you can sustain in an accident. Being crushed between vehicles, being thrown from a vehicle, or getting stuck on a sharp piece of machinery can cause amputation. The effects of this are obviously lifelong. People often have to change their line of work to accommodate their new reality, and those who are able to get prosthetics may require substantial occupational therapy to learn how to use them properly. For some, lifelong phantom pain in the amputated limb is their new normal.
The ulna in the forearm is home to the ulnar nerve. When this nerve becomes pinched in an accident, the fingers do not get the communication they need to perform fine motor movements. To remove the pressure on the nerve and allow full function to return, doctors must perform surgery.
Vehicle accidents are one of the most common causes of arm and leg injuries. In many cases, victims suffer multiple injuries from a single crash. This means multiple rounds of surgery, accepting the risks of anesthesia multiple times, and going through long treatment periods.
Many other accidents can also lead to these unfortunate outcomes. Sports accidents, slip and fall accidents, assault, and faulty products can also lead to arm and leg injuries.
If your injuries are the direct cause of someone else’s negligence, consider pursuing compensation for your injuries with a personal injury claim. Riverside injury lawyers can help you get the care you need, build a case, and fight for your right to compensation.
To protect your right to seek damages, make sure you do not talk to the other party’s insurance company before speaking to a lawyer. Insurance adjusters are very good at downplaying a victim’s injuries, turning their own words against them, or even pinning the blame on them. Anything you tell them can be used against you, which is why it’s best to entrust your attorney with these matters.
You should also preserve all the evidence you have, from photographs and video recordings of crash scenes to medical documents and medical bills. You may also want to keep a daily log of your pain level and physical limitations, which may help you get compensation for pain and suffering.
Choosing the right Long Beach car accident lawyer is a crucial task in this process. If you choose the wrong attorney, you could find yourself as nothing more than a case number. You’ll be left in the dark about your claim and have no proof that your attorney is working aggressively to get a fair settlement.
If you choose correctly, you’ll have a personal injury lawyer who understands the trauma you’ve gone through and is dedicated to getting you every penny of compensation you deserve. Instead of having to chase them down for answers, you’ll enjoy regular updates and be able to get prompt answers to your questions. This is how we operate at Russell & Lazarus in Orange County. We only take a case when we know we can put our full energy into it and give it the attention it needs. We believe that getting the best outcome for each client is more important than getting mediocre outcomes for as many clients as possible.
Looking for help with your arm and leg injury case? Find out how Russell & Lazarus can help you during this difficult time. To schedule your free case evaluation, give us a call at 949-682-3780 or get in touch online.