Signs of a Delayed Injury After a Car Accident

March 28, 2024
Auto Accidents

After a car accident, signs of a delayed injury such as abdominal pain, and spinal or neck injury may worsen if not treated. Common signs include neck pain or soreness in the shoulders, and difficulty breathing. For expert legal advice on getting fair compensation, we advise you to reach out to our Decatur car accident lawyers at Marks Law Group. Call [](tel: 404-939-1485)678-251-9309 today and receive a consultation at no cost!

Types of Injuries That May Be Delayed After an Accident

Common injuries with delayed symptoms are a serious concern for those involved in motor vehicle accidents. It is possible to suffer an injury without immediately showing any pain or discomfort, only for the effects of the injury to become evident later. Whiplash, traumatic brain injuries, neck, and back injuries, and even sprains, strains, and contusions can all be experienced with delayed presentation. This can be either during the aftermath of the accident or later down the line once the body has been allowed time to recover from the shock of the incident.

Whiplash is one of the most common types of delayed car accident injuries and often involves soft tissue damage such as tendons, muscles, and ligaments which may not be immediately affected by trauma but present symptoms after rest has been allowed to take place. Symptoms may involve ongoing shoulder pain in certain extremities or movement instability caused by spinal cord injuries requiring further medical care such as physical therapy or surgery.


Head and brain injuries may involve long-term complications such as loss of consciousness or cognitive issues that occur gradually over days or weeks post-accident. Neck or back injuries may be gradual in their onset, manifesting as chronic pain that requires medical care over an extended period rather than an immediate occurrence after impact. 

Symptoms and Signs of a Delayed Injury

Car accidents can be incredibly traumatic, even if they don’t always result in catastrophic injuries that can end lives. After an accident, the human body responds to trauma and pain differently than you might expect. You may feel as if you emerged unscathed when a delayed injury can catch up with you later. Experiencing adrenaline and other hormones associated with a fight or flight response can mask any symptoms that point to physical problems coming your way.

After a car collision, it is important to be mindful of potential delays in injury onset. These can include whiplash, seat belt abrasions, airbag bruising, lacerations from broken glass or sharp objects, lower back pain, and internal organ bleeding. Accident victims should pay attention to possible signs of whiplash which may present as a headache, blurred vision, and neck stiffness, indicating an underlying problem requiring medical care.

Identifying the Causes of a Delayed Injury

Delayed symptoms after a car accident can be concerning and frightening, as many people expect their pain to manifest immediately. It's important to understand that the cause of delayed symptoms depends on the type of injury suffered. In cases where internal bleeding is to blame, for example, it may take time for damage incurred during the crash to become detectable due to our body's natural healing mechanisms. Blood clots may not pose an immediate danger, but can become problematic over time.

FAQ: Why You Should Hire a Decatur Personal Injury Attorney

Our bodies have an amazing ability to protect us from harm even in times of danger or trauma such as a car accident. When our minds sense danger our bodies activate what is known as the fight or flight response which helps our bodies prepare for potential threats by releasing adrenaline. This immediate response by our body can often mask the pain that would be felt otherwise – this combined with internal healing processes can mean that we only start feeling the effects of a common car accident injury days or weeks after the initial incident. It’s important in these situations to seek medical attention so any potential spinal injury or whiplash can be assessed as early as possible.

Contributing Factors to a Delay in Seeking Treatment

Following an accident, it is important to seek medical treatment due to the possibility of injury, as some common symptoms may not be immediately apparent but can result in further pain or complications due to internal bleeding. Purple bruising and burst blood vessels may occur the morning after the traumatic event despite feeling well initially.

It is important to keep in mind that some injuries take time to present themselves, such as symptoms of whiplash. After a crash, a person might experience little or no symptoms and deem it unnecessary to visit a doctor. But, they may suddenly feel chest pain, memory loss, blurry vision, muscle spasms, and stiffness days later due to severe injuries to their spinal column or brain tissue taking time to develop.


Therefore, those involved in a motor vehicle crash must seek prompt medical attention right away, even if their injuries don’t appear serious at first glance. This will help ensure proper diagnosis and treatment of any musculoskeletal or nerve damage that may take time to manifest itself.

If you believe you have been injured from an auto accident and your symptoms are worsening, do not hesitate to contact our experienced personal injury lawyers at Marks Law Group. We can provide legal guidance concerning your personal injury lawsuit and represent your interests with insurance companies and those responsible for the collision.

Diagnostic Tests Used to Confirm a Delayed Injury

Diagnostic tests may be employed to certify any potential injuries following an auto accident. Imaging studies, such as X-rays, CT scans, and MRI scans, can be utilized to detect common neck injuries such as fractures, dislocations, and soft tissue injuries that cannot easily be seen. Other diagnostic tests often administered are blood tests for inflammation and infection detection, in addition to urine tests.

An MRI scan can be beneficial for diagnosing internal injuries from a motor vehicle collision. It provides a detailed image of the body's internal structure and suggests possible treatments. An MRI can detect soft tissue damage such as torn ligaments or tendons and other serious conditions not shown on X-Rays. Doctors use the images to track healing progress by comparing them with previous scans.

FAQ: What does a car accident lawyer do for you?

 MRI scans are helpful in diagnosing muscle, joint, and tendon damage resulting from accidents. The added precision of MRI scans can help in devising an appropriate treatment plan for soft tissue injuries.

Complications That May Arise from Ignoring a Delayed Injury

When filing a car accident insurance claim, you will need to sign a release of liability form. However, this document absolves the other party from any potential future claims or lawsuits concerning the incident. For this reason, it is strongly recommended to get a medical evaluation before signing such a form, to identify and assess any unseen injuries. Failing to do so could result in the loss of potential financial compensation for unknown injuries.

Can You File a Claim for a Delayed Injury From a Car Accident?

It is estimated that delayed injuries affect up to 72% of all car crash victims, with physical damage being overlooked due to shock and adrenaline at the moment. These types of injuries are often not identified until hours or days after the accident, resulting in people neglecting to take action or seek medical help.

It is important to seek medical attention promptly after sustaining an injury, as having medical records is necessary for any potential legal action.

If you have suffered pain or any other symptom after a car accident, it is possible to file a claim for delayed injury. You may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses and other costs related to your injury even if the symptoms develop after the accident. If you need qualified legal advice regarding your rights and resources, Marks Law Group's personal injury lawyers are there to help you.