After being involved in a car crash, most people experience at least a few hours of being in shock. After such a traumatic event, it is normal to find it harder to think or communicate clearly. Despite being more emotional, however, it is critical that accident victims know how to discuss their crash injuries with their doctor.
During your examination, saying you were in a crash and got injured is important, however it is not enough detail. Below, we explain what to tell your doctor about your injuries to help ensure you get diagnosed and treated as quickly as possible.
If another person’s negligence caused you to suffer harm, we invite you to contact the trusted law firm of Greg Monforton & Partners. We have staff available 24/7 to schedule your free case review. Our qualified auto accident lawyers in Windsor are ready to discuss your situation and answer your questions.
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What Does the Treating Doctor Need to Know About Your Crash?
When you are being examined by the doctor, one of the first questions you are likely to be asked is how you were injured. This detail matters because it can help a doctor know where to begin looking for injuries.
For example, if you were rear-ended in a car crash. In this situation, the doctor may check you for neck and head injuries.
Telling the Doctor About Your Crash
It is worth mentioning to the doctor that you had a crash. However, the focus should remain about your injuries. Do not discuss the crash or potential legal case further with your doctor. For example, do not try to guess how fast the car was going or how the crash happened. These details should be left to the investigators to figure out and only discussed with your lawyer.
Here are some examples of how to discuss your car crash:
- You were involved in a head-on collision, rear-end crash, etc.
- The impact caused you to hit your head on the dashboard
- Your head and neck were jolted back and forth
- Your car was hit a second time by a vehicle behind you
- The impact was forceful enough to cause significant vehicle damage
Discuss Your Injuries in Detail
Accident victims may not always be aware they are injured. Being in shock often makes people completely unaware of any pain. Sometimes people may look for a wound and think they are fine if they do not see any damage. However, if you sustained internal injuries in the crash, you may have no idea you are hurt.
Putting off getting examined and treated is a serious risk. For some crash victims, it can be the difference between fully recovering or suffering permanent damage. In other cases, waiting to see a doctor could even cause an injury to become life-threatening.
Best practices for discussing your injuries with your doctor include:
- Be specific about where you are hurting: Your head hurts behind your eyes
- Rate the level of pain you feel: Is it intense? Mild? Be specific
- Describe the type of pain: Is it throbbing, shooting, or burning?
In addition to these tips, be sure to describe any symptoms you are having and when they started. Do not leave anything out, even if you think they are insignificant. For a doctor, several symptoms together may help tell a story about a specific injury. Leaving out details could make it harder to diagnose you faster.
Share other symptoms you are having, such as:
- Nose bleeds
- Spots in your eyes
- And more
It is dangerous to assume that because you do not see an injury you are not hurt. Additionally, never assume that a seemingly minor injury will go away on its own.
Do Not Hide Pre-existing Injuries or Conditions
When discussing your injuries with a doctor after a crash, never try to hide a pre-existing injury. This always backfires in any auto accident case because the other side will ask for your medical records.
It is much better for you to mention them up front with your doctor. He or she can examine you to help determine if you reinjured them or aggravated them in some way.
Mention Medications You Are Taking
Be sure to mention any medications you are currently taking. This includes prescription drugs you take for a specific condition or over-the-counter medication for allergies, a headache or something else.
Why These Details Matter for Your Health and Your Claim
Doctors are specially trained to diagnose and treat patients. Like most industries, they often have specialisations. For instance, some doctors only focus on emergency medicine. Despite this specialty training, when you come into the ER, they do not know anything about you. Being detailed helps them to diagnosis you more accurately and more quickly.
Additionally, since doctors document what you tell them in your medical records. It can help to support your injury claim if you later need to recover compensation for your damages.
What About Discussing Your Injuries in Follow-Up Appointments?
When your doctor recommends follow-up appointments and continuing medical care to aid your recovery, it is critical that you:
- Continue to follow-up with any care your physician prescribes
- Do not miss scheduled appointments
- Keep track of your medical bills, prescription costs and other bills related to your crash
- Document the progression of your injuries in a journal
- Contact your doctor right away if you experience new symptoms or if your injury seems worse
Missing appointments or not following your doctor’s plan of care can make it seem that you are not really trying to get better. The insurance company will likely argue in this situation that you are trying to make your injuries seem worse to get more compensation.
In addition to these guidelines, it is also vital during your follow-up care to continue to inform your doctor of how you are feeling. Do not downplay your injuries to make them seem less serious or painful than they are. However, you should also never exaggerate to make them seem worse.
Contact Our Law Firm After a Crash. We Are Here to Help
Our firm has decades of experience advocating for injured victims, and we have recovered millions in compensation for our clients.
Not sure if you have a claim? That is why we offer all new clients a completely free case review. During this no-obligation meeting, we listen to your concerns, discuss your situation and any potential legal options.
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