Motor vehicle crashes represent the number one cause of injury in the U.S. FindLaw explains that each year, upwards of 5.6 million crashes occur in this country, 1.6 million of which result in injuries and over 30,000 of which result in death.
Common car crash injuries fall into the following three broad categories:
- Head and back injuries
- Neck and chest injuries
- Other injuries
Head and back injuries
Unfortunately, your head and back are at particular risk for injury in a car crash. Even more unfortunately, such injuries are some of the most serious you can sustain.
If you suffer a traumatic brain injury in your car crash, you can face a lifetime of problems thereafter, including vision problems, hearing problems, speech problems, balance problems, cognitive problems and/or emotional problems. A severe TBI could leave you permanently disabled and unable to work and earn a living.
A spinal cord injury can result in partial or total paralysis. Depending on which part of your spinal cord you injure, you could lose sensation and voluntary movement in your feet, legs and lower torso, rendering you paraplegic. A higher up SCI could cause you to lose sensation and voluntary movement in not only your feet and legs, but also in your arms, hands, fingers and most all of your torso, rendering you quadriplegic. Either way, you likely will spend the rest of your life in a wheelchair.
Neck and chest injuries
Perhaps the most common neck injury is whiplash, i.e., damage to the soft tissues of your neck. Rear-end collisions are notorious for causing this kind of extremely painful injury. As for your chest, broken ribs and collapsed lungs represent the most common injuries. However, you can also sustain injury to your internal organs, especially your stomach.
Other common car crash injuries include the following:
- Broken bones, particularly in your arms and legs
- Crush injuries to one of your arms or legs that could lead to amputation of the destroyed limb
- Internal bleeding that could become a life-threatening situation
One injury that nearly all car crashes produce is emotional distress. Often referred to as pain and suffering, this is one of things for which you can recover compensation in a personal injury lawsuit.