Get Medical Treatment After an Accident

Dexter Evans

If you are in pain after an accident, you should seek medical treatment.

When someone calls who has been in a motor vehicle accident, a question I get asked a lot is, “Should I get medical treatment?”  The answer I usually gives is that a person should if they are in pain.  What kind of treatment?  How long of a duration should an injury victim received treatment?  Those are trickier questions.

Typically, when you are in a car accident, an ambulance will be called to the scene.  If you are in pain, you should get medical treatment and go to the hospital by ambulance.  The reasons are two-fold.  First, because of the shock and adrenaline rush you experience following an accident, your body may not be telling you exactly what it needs to at that moment as to the extent of your injuries.  By the time you get to the hospital, the adrenaline will have worn off and you may begin to notice pain that simply was not present at the scene.  Secondly, getting medical treatment by going to the emergency room on the day of the accident documents your injuries.  The longer gap of time between when you are in a collision and when you first receive medical treatment, the less likely an insurance company will consider your injuries related to the collision.

Following your emergency room visit, if you are still experiencing symptoms, you should make an appointment with your primary care physician.  Depending on the nature of your injuries, your doctor may prescribe physical therapy or could send you to see a specialist.  Diagnostic studies such as an MRI or CT-scan could be ordered because they show injuries an x-ray simply cannot reveal.  As you recover from your injuries, the most important thing to remember is follow your doctor’s orders.  Do not miss appointments.  If you are in physical therapy, do not cancel or skip appointments.  Once you are better or when your doctor says you are at maximum medical improvement (i.e. as good as you will get medically), you can cease getting medical treatment.

While personal injury attorneys know medical terminology because they deal with a variety of injury cases on a daily basis, they are not doctors.  If you are in pain, you should seek to get treatment.  However, when it comes time to deal with the insurance company to settle your case, that is where the assistance from a skilled attorney will come into play.  If you are in an accident and suffer an injury, get treatment, follow your doctor’s orders, and consult with a personal injury attorney to ensure your legal rights are fully explored.


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