Car accidents can result in a variety of different injuries. Some injuries are more severe than others, but all car accident injury victims—no matter the severity—have a right to claim benefits. Compensation from a personal injury claim or lawsuit can help cover a number of damages and burdens, such as expensive medical bills, loss of wages, or even pain and suffering.
Michigan Car Accident Broken Bones Statistics
Nearly 3 million people are injured in car crashes annually in the United States. In Michigan alone, there were 44,417 injuries reported in the past year due to car accidents. And of all injuries reported, broken bones or fractures were some of the most common.
Car accidents are a leading cause of broken bone injuries. In the United States, there are around 2 million patients that suffer from fractures each year. While most broken bone injuries tend to heal normally with proper treatment, some individuals with osteoporosis, smoking habits, and diabetes are at higher risk of developing complications.
The cost of treatment for fractures can vary. Minor fractures are typically easy to treat and heal quickly in most healthy individuals. However, more complicated breaks and fractures can result in more expensive treatments and can take much longer to heal. It’s highly beneficial in these cases for victims to work with an experienced personal injury lawyer to ensure they get the full amount of benefits needed to cover any expenses they incur.
If you have suffered a broken bone injury in a car crash in Detroit, Grand Rapids, Saginaw, or anywhere else in Michigan, the Lee Steinberg Law Firm can help you seek appropriate and full financial compensation. You have the right to have your medical bills, lost wages, and other benefits paid for by the car insurance company. In addition, you can seek compensation for pain and suffering and emotional distress against the driver who was responsible for the accident.
How Does a Bone Fracture Happen?
Human bones are incredibly strong. Most healthy individuals can withstand an immense amount of impact without doing any damage. However, when our bones are forced into unnatural positions under extreme stress, they can break or even shatter. The resulting injury is what doctors refer to as a fracture.
As mentioned above, millions of people in America suffer from broken bones every year. While a fracture can occur in any number of situations, car accidents, sports injuries, and falls are the most common ways people end up with broken bones.
With car accidents specifically, broken bones can happen when:
- Victims are thrown from the vehicle when not wearing a seatbelt. The impact with the ground or other objects is what causes the fracture to happen.
- Another vehicle, typically a larger one, collides with the victim’s vehicle. The impact can crush parts of the car as well as the victim, resulting in broken bones.
- The vehicle hits an object at high speeds causing the driver or passengers to collide with parts of the car’s interior. This impact can cause a bone to break.
- The vehicle rolls over. When passengers are jostled around the car’s interior, they can easily fracture their bones.
Common Types of Broken Bones and Fractures
There are many ways that a bone can break depending on the accident and how it occurs. For example, some breaks can happen laterally or horizontally along the length of a bone, while other fractures can break a bone entirely in two or even shatter it into multiple pieces.
When discussing a fracture on a more standard level, doctors may use terms such as:
- Stress fractures: When the bone has a smaller crack in it that is sometimes hard to pinpoint
- Complete fractures: When the fracture has completely broken the bone into two pieces
- Partial fractures: A break that doesn’t entirely split the bone
- Displaced fractures: When the break causes a large gap to form between the bones
- Open and closed fractures: This refers to whether the skin is broken open by a fracture
Other, more specific terms that are also used when providing more detail about a fracture include:
- Transverse: The break results in a straight line across the bone
- Avulsion: This occurs when the bone separates from the tendons or ligaments
- Oblique: The break cuts diagonally across the bone
- Spiral: The fracture line spirals around the bone
- Impacted: This occurs when the bones collide with each other
- Compression: The bone is crushed
- Comminuted: The break shatters the bone
If you sustained one of the above injuries in a car accident, it’s important to get in contact with an experienced Michigan auto accident lawyer that can help protect your rights. The Lee Steinberg Law Firm has a wealth of experience handling broken bone cases throughout Detroit and Michigan and is dedicated to helping you get the compensation that you deserve.
Signs and Symptoms of Broken Bones and Fractures
The symptoms of a broken bone will depend on where the fracture occurs and how bad it is. However, typically one of the most obvious signs of a fracture is severe pain and the inability to touch or move the area. If the pain is bad enough, some people may experience symptoms of shock such as dizziness, nausea, vomiting, and chills. Some individuals may even pass out.
Other common signs and symptoms include:
- Swelling, redness, or bruising
- Tenderness and pain when touched
- A lump or deformity
- Bone protruding through the skin
- Inability to move the area or bear weight
- A popping, snapping, or grinding sound or sensation
- Severe pain
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or spot any of the signs of a broken bone or fracture after a car accident, the Lee Steinberg Law firm is here to help. Our team of experienced Detroit car accident injury lawyers can help you obtain no-fault benefits, including the payment of medical bills and lost wages. We also specialize in getting awards for pain and suffering resulting from the car collision.
Treatment For Broken Bones and Fractures
To first identify the exact location of the break and the type of fracture you sustained, doctors will perform an examination. The exam will usually involve diagnostic imaging tests, such as x-rays, bone scans, MRIs, or CT scans.
The average recovery time for most fractures is around 6–8 weeks. If the fracture is minor, you may only go home with a wrap and a splint in place to immobilize the injured area. For more severe injuries, treatment is much longer and options may involve the following:
- Cast immobilization: After your doctor has set your bone or bones back into place, they will use a plaster or fiberglass cast to hold the bones in place until they heal.
- Brace: If more extensive immobilization is necessary, your doctor may use additional casts or a brace to keep other surrounding body parts from moving while the fracture heals.
- Traction: Doctors use traction when bones need stabilizing and realigning in more extreme measures. This is done using ropes, pulleys, and weights to create a gentle and steady pulling action.
- Physical therapy: After the bones are set, patients with more severe injuries may often need further treatment such as physical therapy to help them regain mobility.
- Orthopedic surgery: In some cases, surgery is necessary to further set the broken bones. Doctors may need to implant artificial discs, use screws, wires, plates, or nails, inject bone cement, or even fuse bones together.
If you sustain a broken bone in a car accident, you should always seek immediate medical attention, even if you are worried about being able to afford the bill. If you wait too long to seek care, it will affect your long-term recovery. It can also affect your ability to receive compensation for the injury. When you call the authorities and seek emergency medical services right away, there will be evidence, and a report filed to show that your injuries were a result of the accident.
Additionally, working with the team at The Lee Steinberg Law firm can ensure you get the benefits you need to cover any medical costs. We understand how much of a burden the financial responsibilities can be following an accident. Let our team of experienced Detroit and Michigan broken bone lawyers help you get the compensation you need to recover with peace of mind.
Broken Bone and Fracture Injuries Most Associated With Detroit and Michigan Car Accidents
While any number of bones in the body are susceptible to fracture in a car accident, medical experts find that there are a few that are more commonly injured in these cases. This is because most individuals are in a similar seated position when the accident occurs, resulting in some bones being more likely to break than others.
The bones that are most often injured in car accidents include:
- Hand and finger bones
- Wrist bones
- Arm bones
- The tibia and fibula in the legs
- Hip bones
- Facial/skull bones
Seeking Compensation For Broken Bones After a Detroit Car Accident
After a Michigan car accident, you should always call the authorities first and seek immediate medical attention so there is a record on file of what happened. From there, you will need to contact your insurance provider to file a claim. Most injured victims have a right to compensation for any damages as a result of the accident.
Unfortunately, it is quite common for insurers of the guilty party to try to reduce the claim amount or displace blame. In these situations, working with an experienced Detroit car accident attorney can ensure that you receive the full amount of benefits that you deserve. Compensation doesn’t just cover the cost of medical bills but can cover any damages, including:
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Future medical costs for anything that develops down the road as a result of the initial injury
- Pain and suffering. This can include emotional trauma and distress that develops as a result of the accident.
- Lost wages due to the inability to work while recovering
- Loss of future income if the injury leaves you permanently disabled and unable to work
Michigan No-Fault Law
The Michigan No-Fault Law was enacted to help those involved in motor vehicle accidents. The law has been in effect since 1973 and allows a person injured in a car accident to receive certain benefits, no matter who is at fault. This ensures that even those fully or partially responsible for causing a car accident can receive needed benefits.
Michigan no-fault benefits, also known as personal injury protection (PIP) benefits, are specific items that auto insurance companies must pay an injured person following a motor vehicle accident. The most important one is the payment of medical bills. Under the law, any medical bills not covered by health insurance are to be reimbursed by the car insurance company up to the PIP coverage limit.
Other benefits are similar to those listed above and can include:
- 85 % of lost wages for up to 3 years from the date of the car accident
- Other out-of-pocket expenses, such as deductibles and co-pays
- Coverage of household replacement services for loved ones who must complete work on behalf of the injured person
- Attendant care coverage for loved ones who are needed to help assist the injured person
Those injured in a Detroit or Michigan car accident can also obtain compensation for their pain and suffering through a third-party claim. However, you can only get compensation for pain and suffering if the other driver was at least 50% at fault for causing the accident and the injured person sustained what’s called a “threshold” injury.
The three categories for a threshold injury in Michigan are:
- Permanent serious disfigurement
- Serious impairment of body function—most Michigan car accident or truck accident cases involve the last category.
Proving a threshold injury is not easy and usually requires the professional help of an attorney. The team at The Lee Steinberg Law Firm are experts on the Michigan No-Fault Law and are dedicated to helping you obtain the benefits and money you deserve.
The Lee Steinberg Law Firm Can Help
For over 40 years, The Lee Steinberg Law Firm has helped auto accident victims win their cases to collect the compensation they need and deserve. We care about the health and well being of our clients. Recovering from a broken bone injury can take time and can result in many financial burdens. Let us help you get the benefits that you need to recover in peace.
Please call Lee Free and the Michigan broken bone injury lawyers at 1-800-LEE-FREE (1-800-533-3733) or fill out the Free Case Evaluation Form so we can answer any questions you may have about broken bone injuries. You pay nothing until we settle your Michigan personal injury case.