Thousands of people become the victims of slip-and-fall accidents each year in the United States. Poor lighting, wet floors, unmarked curbs and torn carpeting can all lead to a catastrophic fall. These falls can result in serious injuries. While some injuries, such as broken bones or lacerations, may appear right away, others may take several days or even weeks to show up. A Nevada slip-and-fall attorney knows that these delayed injuries can wreak havoc on an insurance claim, as well as the victim’s physical and mental wellbeing.
Slipped or herniated discs
When people slip and fall on their backs, they run the risk of dislocating an intervertebral disc, fracturing a vertebrae or causing spinal cord damage. The back is made up of series of vertebrae, separated by gel-filled intervertebral discs. These discs can slip out of place and pinch or damage the nerves surrounding the vertebrae. If the person should fall or bump his or her back again, the disc may herniate and cause an excruciating amount of pain. Furthermore, herniated discs can result in chronic disability, pain and other life-changing issues.
Traumatic brain injury
Traumatic brain injury occurs when the force of an impact, like from a slip-and-fall accident, causes the soft brain tissue to smack against the inner skull. As a result, the brain becomes bruised and damaged. Although there may be initial signs of brain damage due to the injury, some symptoms of TBI may not show up for days, weeks or even months later. These symptoms may appear as the brain continues to swell and bleed after an injury occurs, a fact known by a Nevada slip-and-fall attorney.
A study released in Neurology showed that even cases of mild traumatic brain injury, or concussion, can cause chronic cognitive disabilities. Symptoms can be as mild as headaches, nausea and dizziness. Severe symptoms include deficiencies in visual, auditory and cognitive abilities. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, falls are to blame for approximately 40 percent of all TBI cases in the U.S., making them the most common cause of brain trauma.
When people fall, they tend to tighten the muscles in their shoulders, neck and back. The body’s release of adrenaline during the fall may make it hard for people to tell that they have a muscle strain or tear. In the days following the accident, however, people may begin to experience pain radiating from the torn muscle or muscle burning. While some muscle strains are minor and may heal by themselves over time, others can be extremely debilitating and even affect neurological conduction depending on where they are located.
In the moments following a slip-and-fall accident, people are often overwhelmed and not sure what to do. Accident victims must remember that even though they may not feel pain right away, the fall could have caused physical injuries that will appear later. They may want to consider obtaining legal assistance from a Nevada slip-and-fall attorney.