Helping Car Accident Victims Receive Fair Compensation
You’ve likely heard of whiplash, but do you know what to do if you get injured in this way?
Whiplash is typically caused by car accidents, specifically rear-end accidents. When your head and neck are suddenly forced backward and then forward—almost like a whip being cracked—the muscles and soft tissues in your neck are likely to suffer injury. Sometimes, whiplash is minor, but other patients experience intense pain and lasting symptoms.
We can help you file an injury claim if you suffered whiplash when someone else rear-ended you. It’s important to get treatment for this injury, as the pain can interfere with everyday life. However, the treatment you need should not be funded out of your own pocket. Our attorneys are here to help you request fair compensation from the at-fault party after a whiplash injury. If you are ready to start your claim, we are ready to work with you.
Call Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP at (800) 900-0863 to schedule a free consultation. Our San Jose attorneys have significant experience handling whiplash claims.
Is It Whiplash?
Whiplash, also known as neck sprain or strain or cervical acceleration-deceleration (CAD) syndrome, refers to a certain type of injury that causes neck, shoulder, and back pain. However, identifying whiplash is not always easy for two reasons.
First, the symptoms of whiplash may not appear for hours or even days after a car accident. This is one reason we suggest accident victims see a doctor as soon as possible after a crash—your physician can examine you for the injury and tell you what to look out for in case its symptoms have been delayed.
Second, the pain most people associate with whiplash may actually be another injury. If you have a broken bone, herniated disk, or other serious spinal cord, neck, or back injury, it’s important to have a correct diagnosis, so you can receive treatment before things get worse. In short, seeing a doctor is the best way to determine if you have whiplash after a car accident.
What Symptoms Does Whiplash Cause?
Depending on the severity of your injury and the types of tissue it affected, your symptoms may vary.
However, whiplash commonly causes:
- Pain or stiffness of the neck
- Pain that worsens with neck movement
- Decreased range of motion of the neck
- Headaches that start at the base of the skull
- Tenderness or pain in shoulders, upper back, and/or upper arms
- Tingling or numbness of the arms
The injury may also cause:
- Blurred vision or other vision issues
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
- Difficulty chewing, swallowing, or speaking
- Sleep disturbances
- Sudden mood changes
- Difficulty concentrating or remembering things
You should seek immediate medical attention if you are experiencing:
- Severe pain
- Neck instability
- Pain, tingling, numbness, and/or weakness that radiates into the shoulder, arm, and/or hand
- Problems with balance or coordination
- Drastic changes in behavior or mood
Seeking Treatment for Whiplash
For the most part, whiplash treatment involves rest and pain management. While some patients can use ice, heat, and over-the-counter painkillers to lessen symptoms, others need more advanced care including:
- Physical therapy
- Prescription pain medications
- Steroid injections
- Massage therapy or chiropractic care
- Radiofrequency neurotomy
Most patients fully recover from whiplash within a few weeks of the injury. However, some may experience ongoing or even chronic neck pain. While doctors are still trying to determine the causes of chronic pain, we do know it is more common among patients who experience severe neck pain, a very limited range of motion, and pain that spreads to the arms after a whiplash injury.
Making a Whiplash Injury Claim
If you were in a collision that could have caused whiplash, it’s important to visit a doctor for a full diagnosis before you start your injury claim. Whiplash does not only happen in high-speed accidents—in fact, even if the car that hit you was only going 10 miles per hour, it could still cause this injury. The neck is more vulnerable than many other parts of the body, and easily injured by the forces present in any car accident.
To learn more about the symptoms, treatment options, and potential complications of whiplash, check out the following resources:
- Mayo Clinic: Whiplash
- Cleveland Clinic: Whiplash (Neck Strain, Neck Sprain)
- Spine-Health: What Is Whiplash?
Whiplash injuries can cause extreme discomfort and make it difficult to keep up with your daily responsibilities. Depending on the severity of your injury, you may need to take time off work to heal. Then, there are the costs of doctor’s visits, medications, and other therapies to cover. All these damages can and should be covered by the at-fault party. Our lawyers can help make that happen. If you suffered whiplash after being rear-ended, please reach out to us at your convenience to discuss your legal options and how to maximize your settlement.
Our experienced, client-focused team at Caputo & Van Der Walde LLP is here to help. Call our San Jose office today at (800) 900-0863 for your free consultation.