Common Bicycle Accident Injuries
A person on a bicycle is far more physically vulnerable than those driving around him or her. One strike can force them off the bike, pin them to the ground, or worse. During a collision, some common bicycle accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Neck, back and/or spinal cord injury
- Broken bones
- Emotional trauma
Of course, this is not a complete list of possible injuries. Any harm done by someone else’s negligence is reason to contact an experienced bicycle accident attorney.
Concussion and Traumatic Brain Injury
A bicycle rider can sustain a traumatic brain injury (TBI) in a variety of ways during a collision with a motor vehicle. The vehicle itself might strike the person’s head, or the rider might be thrown to the ground or into another object. A TBI can also happen if the head is violently whipped back and forth without a physical impact.
TBI contributes to about 30 percent of all injury-related deaths, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If the brain injury is not fatal, the survivor might experience impaired thinking, memory, movement, sensation, or emotional function. These effects could last for days or linger for the rest of a person’s life.
A concussion is another word for a mild traumatic brain injury, but there is nothing “mild” about it. The health consequences can still be very serious and even life-threatening. In rare cases, head trauma can form a blood clot that crowds the brain against the skull. Because of the wide range of problems that could stem from a TBI, it’s critical to seek medical care right away after a collision.
Neck, Back and Spinal Cord Injury
When a motor vehicle strikes a person riding a bike, the impact can affect his or her entire body. The neck, back and spine can sustain serious injuries from the whipping motion as well as the strike itself. Fractures, muscle strains, ruptured discs and other injuries can mean a lifetime of pain. The surge of adrenaline a person experiences after a collision may mask the severity of a neck or back injury. Without immediate medical care, the injury can turn from mild to debilitating over the coming days.
A bicycle accident can also cause spinal cord damage, which frequently impacts a person’s strength, sensation, and other body functions. Someone with a spinal cord injury could be paralyzed, depending on the location and the severity of the injury.
Emotional Trauma and PTSD
Not all injuries are the kind you can see. A crash is a shocking and scary event. A person involved in a collision on a bicycle may suffer from lasting emotional effects including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). A long-term mental health issue, a person suffering from PTSD may experience flashbacks, nightmares and/or frightening thoughts.
Lasting emotional trauma may affect a person’s mood, memory, ability to relax, and the desire to do things that were once enjoyable. It can impact relationships and daily functions. Coupled with physical injuries, emotional trauma can turn life upside-down.
If you sustained injuries in a bicycle collision, the attorneys at CaseyGerry can help you understand your legal rights and ability to obtain compensation for medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from the crash. Contact us today for a confidential consultation. California law limits the amount of time you have to protect your rights, so acting immediately is important.