Snellings Law PLLC Attorneys are Personal Injury Trial Lawyers

Suffered Broken Bones from an Auto Accident? Take these Next Steps

If you’ve ever broken a bone, you know how disruptive these types of injuries are to daily life. Simple tasks like making coffee or doing laundry become huge feats that take a lot of energy and maneuvering. A slight misstep or wrong move on the broken bone can cause a lot of pain and sometimes make the injury worse.

If you break a bone in a car crash due to the negligence of another driver, that opens up a whole new world of headaches. Not only are mundane tasks difficult and sometimes impossible, but you also have the aftermath of the wreck to deal with.

Suffered Broken Bones from an Auto Accident? Take these Next Steps

We’ve seen a lot of cases where an injury victim broke a bone in an auto accident caused by a negligent driver. Read below to learn what steps to take after breaking a bone in an auto accident.

What Is a Commercial Vehicle?

When you’re traveling in a car, it’s easy to forget that if the car is going 50 miles an hour, so is your body. Therefore, when a crash happens, your vehicle absorbs some of the force as well as your body. If you’re not wearing a seatbelt, your body will continue to move at the same speed until you impact something to slow you down. This is usually some part of the car’s interior, which can certainly result in breaking a bone. Even if you are wearing a seatbelt, you can still get serious injuries from the impact.

Sometimes, the occupants of the car might put their arms up when they anticipate a crash to brace for the impact. These fractures are normally treated with a cast or a splint, but depending on the break, you might need surgery.

Seatbelts and airbags will save your life, but that doesn’t mean they won’t potentially injure you in the process. When the seatbelt tightens from the impact and your body’s sudden thrust forward, it could cause a clavicle or rib fracture. The clavicle, or collarbone, is extremely fragile, and these fractures are tricky to heal because you cannot put the clavicle in a cast. The treatment for this injury could be to put your arm in a cast to prevent movement and to do physical therapy. Airbags can cause burns, lacerations, and worse. Major skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries can also result from not wearing a seatbelt.

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Sometimes the impact of the crash is so significant that the car crumples on impact. When this happens, it can cause a break in the tibia, fibula, ankles, femur, ribs, back, hip, or pelvis. The femur is the large thigh bone, which takes a long time to heal. Back or spine injuries are especially concerning because they can result in paralysis. Any of these injuries may need surgery to heal, depending on the type and severity of the fracture.

Types of Fractures

There are many different types of fractures. Some are worse than others and may require more intense treatment. Some will heal with a cast or a splint. Here are some common fractures that may occur in a car accident:

Bone Buckle – Bone buckles are most common in young children because their bones are more flexible. This type of fracture occurs when a bone buckles or bends instead of breaking.

Hairline/Stress Fracture – A hairline fracture occurs when the bone has a small break or crack. Sometimes hairline fractures will go untreated for a while after they occur because the injury victim believes the pain is just from bruising, causing the break to worsen. However, hairline fractures usually don’t need surgery to heal.

Transverse Fracture – Transverse fractures occur when the break is horizontal and completely through the bone, separating it into two pieces. These fractures are treated with immobilization from a cast and/or surgery.

Avulsion – This is when the bone is separated from the ligaments and tendons. Sometimes surgery is needed to treat avulsions if the bone and bone fragment have moved too far away from each other to naturally reunite.

Oblique Fracture – These fractures occur when the bone breaks diagonally. Oblique fractures may only need a cast or splint to heal, or they could need realignment or surgery if the bones move out of place.

Comminuted Fracture – Comminuted fractures are when the bone is broken into three or more pieces. Sometimes comminuted fractures are also classified as segmental fractures if one section of the bone has separated from the other two. These fractures are severe and need surgery to heal. Usually, rods, screws, or plates are needed to hold the bone together.

Non-displaced Fracture – Non-displaced fractures are complete breaks, but the pieces of bone haven’t moved to create a gap. These fractures are less likely to require surgery to heal than displaced fractures.

Displaced Fracture – Displaced fractures indicate that the bone has broken completely through and the pieces have moved, creating a gap. Surgery is usually required to heal any displaced fracture.

Compound/Open Fracture – Sometimes a break is so bad that the bone will puncture the skin and poke out. These breaks are called open or compound fractures. Compound fractures need immediate treatment to prevent infection.

Take These Steps If You’ve Broken a Bone in an Auto Accident

Step #1: Seek Immediate Medical Treatment

Of course, the first thing you should do after an accident is seek medical treatment. Even if you think you are completely fine, it’s important to get checked out. Sometimes you’ll know immediately if you need an ambulance to take you to the hospital. Injuries like compound fractures are immediately identifiable and need to be treated quickly to prevent other problems from developing later.

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Some injuries are hard to spot initially after a crash. Going to the doctor and getting an x-ray might help you identify an injury like a hairline fracture. This way, you can get the treatment you need quicker rather than letting your injuries worsen, which can cause problems later down the road.

Seeing a doctor immediately after a crash can also help you map out a recovery plan. The sooner you determine if you need bones to be reset or surgery, the faster you can heal and get back to your normal life. Putting off treatment means living in pain and causing injuries to worsen, which can lengthen the time needed to heal.

Step #2: Consult an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney

Insurance adjusters may see that you’ve broken a bone due to their client’s negligence and offer you compensation for your medical bills. However, a broken bone can cause more issues for you than medical bills. You may be unable to perform your tasks at work and have to miss time and wages while you heal. You may be unable to fulfill your household duties due to your injury. For injuries like face and skull fractures, you may be unaware that you have a traumatic brain injury that requires lifelong care until symptoms show up later. 

An experienced auto accident attorney can help you recover damages for things like lost wages, mental anguish, loss of household services, and more that the adjuster won’t offer. They can also help you recover damages for past and future medical expenses and past and future pain and suffering.

The best thing to do after you’ve broken bones in an auto accident is consult an attorney before talking to the at-fault’s insurance adjuster. The adjuster will most likely try to trick you into indicating that your injuries are not as severe as you claim—even when it seems obvious you are severely injured. Watch the video below to learn one way they may do this:

The adjuster’s job is to avoid paying you the compensation you deserve. A good auto accident lawyer knows how to speak to the adjuster and avoid their tricks.

Call Snellings Law if You’ve Broken Bones in an Auto Accident

At Snellings Law, we’ve helped many injury victims with broken bones from a car crash get the treatment they need. We know the personal injury process and insurance adjusters, and we are equipped to get you the resolution you deserve. We are passionate about helping victims in North Texas, and we serve only this area because we live here and love this community. We have a whole team of experienced trial lawyers that are ready and able to fight for you inside the courtroom if need be. Don’t hesitate to give us a call today if you’ve broken a bone due to the negligence of another driver. We offer free strategy sessions with an attorney to discuss your case and determine what steps to take next. Call us at (214) 387-0387 to schedule your free strategy session today.

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Free Strategy Session Reveals How To Avoid the Traps Insurance Companies Set for Victims to Destroy Claims.

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After your Free Strategy Session, you will understand where insurance companies can set traps for you and what needs to be done to avoid these traps. You will also understand the personal injury process as well as how we can help, or if you need the help of an attorney. The strategy session typically will have one of three outcomes. You:

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Again, there is zero obligation and you will be informed and understand your rights and the process. We want to arm you with knowledge to avoid the traps insurance companies set to harm your claim.