Helpful Information

Delayed Symptoms After Car Accidents

Posted by Harlene Labrum | Jan 17, 2021

 According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), over three million people are injured every year in the United States from automobile accidents. These injuries are often severe and can lead to being rushed to an Emergency Room for treatment. However, oftentimes the apparent injury does not seem to be cause for alarm. Victims often tell themselves they are fine, that its just a bump or a bruise, or a little soreness. However, those seemingly mild injuries may develop into something more severe or even life-threatening later in time. These delayed symptoms can result in long-term, life changing medical issues that impede your ability to work and live a full life.

It is always recommended to receive immediate medical care after any accident to assess your injuries. But even with this precaution, it is possible for a car accident victim to develop delayed symptoms resulting from the accident at a later time, even after an immediate medical evaluation. If you suspect your current symptoms are the result of an auto accident, contact the experienced attorneys at Labrum Law Firm at (615) 338-9500 to learn how you may have the legal right to receive compensation for your medical injuries.

Initial Injury Symptoms from a Car Accident

Many injuries car accident victims receive as a result of a car accident are easy to see and diagnose. These symptoms should be treated at the scene of the accident and further examined by a doctor at a hospital. Common injuries resulting from car accidents often include:

  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Broken bones and fractures
  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Bruising and contusions
  • Burns
  • Pulled muscles and damaged tendons
  • Abdominal Pain and internal bleeding
  • Internal organ damage
  • Nerve damage
  • Aortic dissection
  • Knee injuries
  • Psychological distress (post-traumatic stress disorder)

Many of these injuries are immediately apparent and a victim will naturally seek medical attention due to their seriousness. However, doctors caution victims of car accidents to be aware of the symptoms of concussions and internal bleeding. Both of these can be caused by a car accident, leaving a victim feeling relatively fine right after the car accident, but worsen later in the days or weeks to come. Because the damage and danger is internal and cannot be easily identified, the victim may try to lie down and rest, delaying important medical treatment for a condition that could be fatal.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) are often unnoticed at the time of a car accident. TBIs include everything from concussions to severe internal bleeding or swelling of the brain. Some of the symptoms the Mayo Clinic lists symptoms of TBI or concussion include:

  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Headache, especially with ringing in the ears
  • Blurry vision
  • Drowsiness or fatigue
  • Confusion, forgetfulness, dizziness, and/or “seeing stars”

If you have these or any other signs of a concussion, you should seek the advice and evaluation of a medical professional as soon as possible.

Internal Bleeding and Internal Organ Damage

Many of the same symptoms of internal bleeding can appear similar to that of a concussion. The most common symptom is abdominal pain. While this may just be simple bruising, it could also be a sign of internal damage to the tissues or organs. Some of the symptoms of internal bleeding are:

  • Losing consciousness
  • Acute vision problems
  • Abdominal pain, especially if it is severe
  • Chest pain and/or shortness of breath
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Numbness or weakness of the body

Again, if you are experiencing any symptoms of internal bleeding, you should seek medical attention immediately. If you have suffered from any of these delayed symptoms after a car accident, contact the experienced car accident attorneys at Labrum Law Firm to ensure your rights are protected and you are properly compensated for your injuries.

Other Delayed Injury Symptoms from a Car Accident

A delayed symptom from an injury caused during an auto accident can materialize days, weeks, even months after the initial incident. Sometimes, victims may not even correlate their symptoms to their previous car accident. Delayed symptoms range from mild to life-threatening. Mental and psychological effects can also manifest themselves as a direct result of the accident. Some of the examples of commonly seen delayed injury symptoms include:


Headaches are extremely common, even without one being involved in an accident. Oftentimes rest and over-the-counter painkillers are the remedies. However, after an accident, headaches can be the signal of something larger.

  • Concussion
  • Whiplash
  • Neck injury
  • Blood clot
  • Traumatic brain injury

Unfortunately, because they are so common, many doctors may not give headaches the attention they need and deserve. It is important to emphasize to the medical provider that you were in a car accident so that they may consider some of the more severe injuries that may be present as a result of a headache.

Back Pain

What one commonly calls “the back”, is a complex combination of the skeletal, nervous, and muscular systems. The spinal column is what protects the nerves that run throughout the body, with the tendons and muscles supporting it. There is a plethora of injuries that a car accident can induce. Some of them might result in inflammation or bulging that gets worse over time. These conditions can become chronic and take a considerable amount of time to heal and can include costly physical therapy or chiropractic treatments. The worst cases may require surgery with the help of specialist doctors and equipment to properly diagnose and treat.

Numbness and Tingling

Often a result of back trauma, numbness and or tingling is usually due to nerve damage and can worsen over time. The cause cannot always be pinpointed easily, as an injury to the head, neck, or joints can also result in damage and the same symptoms and worsen over time. Even more severe, life-threatening causes like internal bleeding or blood clots can produce these symptoms.

Psychological Injuries

While most people focus on the physical injuries of an accident, often the mental scars can be just as debilitating. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other conditions of emotional distress can lead to life-altering delayed symptoms developing. Some common symptoms are:

  • Loss of sleep or insomnia
  • Nightmares or disturbed sleeping
  • Mood swings
  • Changes in personality or behavior
  • Difficulty in focusing or concentrating
  • Changes in one's appetite
  • Flashbacks
  • Panic attacks
  • Severe anxiety
  • Difficulty in controlling one's emotions
  • Depression or moodiness

Treatment of psychological injuries can include medication, therapy, and group counseling.

How Labrum Law Firm Can Help You After Your Car Accident

It is important to understand that if you developed a new or delayed symptom after a car accident, you may still have the right to receive compensation for your injuries and damages. Explore your legal rights and ensure that you get the proper compensation in order to treat any injuries derived from your car accident by contacting Labrum Law Firm at (615) 338-9500. We would welcome the opportunity to discuss your legal rights with a free consultation and help you understand all of your legal options.

About the Author

Harlene Labrum

Harlene is focused and passionate about helping those injured in car wrecks.  She earned her J.D. at Nashville School of Law and her Bachelor's degree at State University of New York at Albany, awarded with the highest GPA and high honors.  Harlene began her career in law as a personal injury par...

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