When you are in a bicycle crash, you may have injuries ranging from minor cuts or scrapes to major trauma. If you have hit your head or injured another part of your body, it’s essential to seek immediate medical attention right away.
Visiting a doctor is important to determine the extent of your injuries, particularly if a driver hits you while you are on your bicycle. You can work with a South Carolina bicycle accident attorney to help you negotiate with the driver’s insurance company and get reasonable compensation for your injuries.
When to Visit the Hospital After a Bike Accident
If you are injured in a bicycle accident, it’s important to seek immediate medical attention for serious injuries. However, if your accident occurred because of a negligent driver, you should visit the hospital, even if you have no apparent injuries.
That’s because not all accident injuries are obvious right away; you could have internal bleeding or a TBI (traumatic brain injury). These conditions aren’t visible but are serious and require professional medical care. Some conditions, like whiplash, could require ongoing treatment later, like physical therapy.
Plus, if you don’t visit the hospital and decide to file a lawsuit later, the driver’s lawyer may try to say your injuries were not serious since you did not receive emergency medical care. The longer you wait before seeking medical attention for an injury, the harder it is to prove that the driver who hit you caused your injuries.
When you go to a hospital following a bike accident, regardless of its severity, you have official documentation in your medical records of any conditions resulting from the driver’s negligence.
Common Injuries from a Bicycle Accident
Your doctor can diagnose your injuries and document your treatments, creating medical records and invoices as evidence of your suffering. These records can prove helpful in a claim against a negligent driver.
Road rash is a painful injury resulting from bare skin coming into contact with the hard pavement. Gravel and other debris can enter through the open wound, increasing the potential for infection.
It may take a long time to heal, requiring frequent bandage changes and keeping it clean. A road rash injury may also cause severe damage to the skin. Individuals who suffer from road rash sometimes require skin grafting surgery to repair the wound.
Bicyclists involved in traffic accidents may suffer internal injuries such as internal bleeding and hernias. When the bicycle’s handlebar hits your lower abdomen, it may cause a traumatic abdominal wall hernia. These internal injuries frequently require significant surgery to treat, including a hernia mesh implant.
A bicycle crash can result in broken arms or legs. Some fractured bones in bicycle accidents are severe enough to warrant emergency surgery and extensive physical therapy.
A complex break in the arm or leg requires surgery to realign the bone and use wires, plates, or nails to keep it in place. Other injuries may require a cast, splint, or crutches. In all cases of broken bones, emergency care and immediate treatment are essential, or the bones won’t heal properly.
Bicyclists can lose or break their teeth, or suffer facial fractures after a crash with a car. A broken jaw, for example, may need metal plates or wires to keep the bones in place and promote healing. Recovery from a fractured jaw can take several months.
Traumatic brain injuries
Some injuries may not be evident from the beginning, such as traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). Symptoms of a brain injury, such as seizures, memory loss, and nausea, may occur within 24 hours of the accident, or they may emerge days or weeks after the accident. Some people appear to have no symptoms immediately following a TBI, but their thinking skills and behaviors may change later.
Mild TBIs may not require extensive medical treatment, aside from rest. Emergency care for a severe brain injury can involve creating a hole in the skull to relieve pressure. Medications and rehabilitation can empower people living with TBI to regain function in their bodies and help them adjust to an alternative lifestyle.
You Can Take Legal Action
When filing a bicycle accident claim for compensation, it’s essential to work with an attorney with experience handling personal injury cases. At Joye Law Firm, we can use your medical records to build a strong claim and help you get the maximum compensation you deserve.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our lawyers to find out how we can help you.