Car accident injuries can be as unpredictable as the current stock market. Serious collisions can leave a person with minor scrapes and bruises. Minor accidents can cause detrimental soft tissue damage that can last a lifetime. Other injuries include playing hide-and-seek.

Beyond the immediate physical injuries that result from car accidents, there are often psychological effects that victims grapple with. Many experience post-accident psychological distress that can be just as debilitating as the physical wounds. Moreover, knowing the importance of gathering evidence, taking photographs post-car accident is crucial for legal matters and for the mental healing process.

For those unfortunate incidents involving impaired drivers, understanding the steps to take post-drunk driving accidents can be essential for victims to protect their rights and wellbeing.

Emergency room doctors are trained to look for common injuries with delayed symptoms after a traffic collision. When drivers and passengers refuse medical care at the scene and decline proper examination in a hospital, the consequences can be deadly.

Why Are Some Injuries Delayed in a Car Accident?

The physics involved in a traffic collision and the physical response to danger can frequently cause delayed injuries. Car crashes are the perfect embodiment of Newton’s Laws of Motion and illustrate what happens to a person’s body during a crash:

  1. Law of inertia: if an object is moving, it will remain moving until it is acted upon by a force
  2. Law of mass and acceleration: when a force is applied to the object, it will cause it to move in the direction of the force
  3. Law of motion: for every force that is applied to the object, there will always be an equal and opposite reaction

Newton’s Laws in action:

  1. Car A is at a stoplight, and Car B travels in the same direction at 25 mph.
  2. Car B hits Car A at 25 mph., forcing Car A forward
  3. The opposing force of Car A causes Car B to come to a stop abruptly

Moving vehicles create kinetic energy. When a car needs to stop, it must get rid of the energy. Typically, a car will do this by pressing the brake and slowing down. However, when a car strikes the other, the energy has nowhere to go. The vehicles absorb the kinetic energy in the form of damage.

Newton’s Laws in the real world are much more shocking. Imagining cars abruptly accelerating or stopping cannot justify what happens to the people inside the vehicles. The Transport Accident Commission partnered with Monash University Accident Research Centre to explain the physics behind injuries:

  • The kinetic energy created by the cars in movement must go somewhere. In a car accident, well-made vehicles absorb most of the energy and will crumple.
  • When the car cannot absorb any more, the rest of the kinetic energy will go into the people inside.
  • The kinetic energy causes car accident injuries. When a person’s body cannot absorb any more energy, it begins to break.

Just as the cars absorb the kinetic energy through broken glass and bent fenders, a person will absorb the kinetic energy through broken bones and internal damage. Broken collar bones, ribs, and arms are noticeable after a crash. However, the kinetic energy can cause internal damage that may not be as obvious. Together with the effects of adrenaline, car accident victims may not notice pain or other symptoms for hours, days, or weeks after a crash.

How Does Adrenaline Work and How Does It Factor into Delayed Injuries?

When adrenaline is triggered in the body, it causes an onslaught of symptoms. The fight-or-flight rush of energy is a natural response to danger or stress.

In school, the rush of adrenaline can help a student cram for a test. For a parent, the fight-or-flight response can help a parent grab a child out of harm’s way.

According to Medical News Today, when adrenaline courses throughout the body:

  • The heart rate increases, causing a racing sensation
  • Blood is redirected toward the muscles for quicker reflexes
  • Airways begin to relax, increasing oxygen to the brain and body to boost responsiveness
  • Pupils widen to allow in more light
  • The brain starts to process information faster

When in danger, the brain will process input quickly and allow a person to assess the situation rapidly and react faster:

  • A prime example caught on camera in China is a mother who saved her young son from being struck by an out-of-control car. A mother and two children were walking in a parking lot when the driver of a parked car shot backwards without warning. In a split second, the mother stepped back and whipped her son around out of the path of the runaway car.

In addition to thinking faster, adrenaline decreases the body’s ability to feel pain and increases strength. Adrenaline also releases endorphins, allowing a person to feel in control while their body is in an extreme state:

  • In Alberta, a new mom jumped from a second-floor bedroom window to save her baby from a fire. While her home was completely engulfed in flames, Amber Dyck tucked her small baby against her chest and jumped out her window. Amber made sure to fall on her back to protect her child from impact. She fell on the BBQ and fractured the vertebrae in her spine but did not let go of her baby. The seven-month-old Daemon was not injured.

When a person is involved in a car accident, adrenaline can mask pain or make injuries feel far less severe than they are. Accident victims may refuse medical treatment. Hours or days later, when the adrenaline has dissipated, the emergence of pain can be mistaken for expected soreness from the crash.

However, delayed injuries can be serious and sometimes fatal.

Why Are Delayed Injuries Typically Serious?

Humans are not robots. Our bodies will not react the same way in the same situation every time. The danger in delayed-onset injuries is that they do not present with obvious symptoms.

Actress Natasha Richardson fell during a beginner ski lesson in Canada one cold Monday in 2009. Resort officials recall her joking and laughing at the accident. However, later in the day she complained of head pain.

Eventually, she was taken to a nearby hospital, then transferred two more times before landing in New York. By Wednesday, she was dead.

The actress suffered an epidural hemorrhage. Some traumatic brain injuries may not show any signs. In Richardson’s case, as she joked about her fall, her brain had already begun to bleed. It was not until the pressure built up that she felt any symptoms hours later. Doctors did not discover the cause of death until after an autopsy.

How Can I Prove My Injuries Are from My Car Accident?

Proving delayed injuries resulted from an accident rests heavily on an accident victim’s reaction.

After a car accident, seek immediate medical attention.

If the accident is minor and it appears no one has been injured, seek immediate medical attention.

If the accident happens on the way to a life-changing, once-in-a-lifetime meeting with your greatest hero, seek immediate medical attention.

Seeing a doctor after a collision accomplishes two things:

  • Only a trained and experienced doctor can evaluate an accident victim properly for potentially life-threatening delayed injuries.
  • If a doctor misses an injury or if a minor injury becomes more serious later, the fact that a medical professional gave you a proper examination is key in a personal injury case

Navigating a personal injury claim can be daunting, especially when a person is hurt. Gina Corena & Associates can help accident victims through the process and offer sound legal advice along the way.

As founder of Gina Corena & Associates, she is dedicated to fighting for the rights of the people who suffer life-changing personal injuries in car, truck and motorcycle accidents as well as other types of personal injury. Gina feels fortunate to serve the Nevada community and hold wrongdoers accountable for their harm to her clients.

  • This was my first time using a lawyer, which I needed due a major car accident. They made everything simple and stress free, and I couldn’t be happier with the attentive care I received from everyone at the law office. Gresia was fantastic, and kept in touch regularly. She was professional, knowledgeable, and very kind. I would recommend them to anyone.

    - Deb Compton

  • Gina and her crew are truly amazing. They exceeded my expectations. They kept in contact with me throughout the whole time and any questions I did have They would take the time and explain everything so I would know what to expect. I would highly recommend them at any time.

    - Chris S

  • Thank you very much for the services everyone answered every single one of my calls and this firm took care of me from start to finish. Thank you so much Gina for taking on my case and assisting me I will recommend you to everyone.

    - Sayra Sánchez

  • I rarely do reviews but I want to share what an outstanding team Gina Corena has. Mahna Pourshaban did such an awesome job In helping us get our settlement, she has treated us like family since day 1 that we met her.. Me and my family want to tell u guys thank u from the bottom of our hearts.

    - The LOPEZ Family

  • Working with Gina was An amazing feeling as the client to know that my case is being handled professionally and to the best it can be ! Knowing that Gina can handle it gave me confidence and peace, 100 percent recommend Gina and her associates team !

    - Jonathan Rodriguez

  • GINA CORENA is the best attorney indeed! Thank you to her amazing team the attention to detail I received was incredible. 100% recommend to everyone!

    - Clara Maria

  • My experience with Gina Corena’s office was amazing. They were all professional and were easy to reach out to during my whole case. I’d recommend their services 10/10!!

    - Mark Surban

  • I'm really satisfied with the work these ladies provide. They’re Super reliable and Professional, Alexandra was the one that helped me with my case and she’s super nice and sweet. She made sure I was aware about all the updates with my case. Overall the work they provide to the citizens of Las Vegas is top notch. Thank you Gina Corena and associates.

    - Gil Axel

  • This is the best company I have dealt with hands down. I am super thankful with them for all the work they did on behalf of my case. The process was rather simple and very well explained from start to finish. Thank you so much Gina Corena &. Associates. Thank you Kim for assisting in my case.

    - Raidel Echavarria

  • I received nothing but top notch service from this firm not once but twice please keep up the outstanding job customer service is very important to me and your firm went above and beyond again THANK YOU

    - Freda Smith

  • Such a great law firm. This was my first time having to get a lawyer due to an auto accident and they explained all the ins and outs of my case and the process. I will definitively keep them in mind again for the future.

    -Alyssa Ortega

  • If I can give Gina’s firm 10 stars I would. They have the best customer service & most knowledgeable staff I’ve ever come across. The office is always clean and it has a lovely and positive vibe. Thank you to this amazing firm to make my experience fast and easy for me. Gina definitely knows how to care of her clients and treated me like family. I will recommended to my friends and family.

    -Cony Jordan


CALL US 24/7

Schedule A Free
Injury Consultation Below

    By contacting Gina Corena & Associates, you agree to receive emails, text messages, and phone calls regarding your legal inquiry, which may be considered advertising material.