Delayed Pain After Car Accident

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If you’ve been in a car accident, you may experience delayed pain. Unfortunately, this is a common occurrence, and it’s important to be aware of the symptoms to get the help you need.

If you have been in a car accident and are experiencing any pain, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. Then, contact Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. today to know what steps to take next and whether or not you have the right to file a personal injury claim.

Why Does Delayed Pain Happen?

Delayed pain often occurs because the body is trying to cope with the trauma of being injured in an accident.

Adrenaline and the “Fight or Flight” Response

The body releases adrenaline in response to a traumatic event. This is the “fight-or-flight” response, and it can help you deal with the initial pain of an injury. The adrenaline kicks in, and your body will feel less pain than when you are calm or relaxed.

You may have heard stories from people who have been in an accident or a violent situation and did not feel pain until afterward. They are often shocked by the sudden onset of pain when their adrenaline wears off.


Another factor that can contribute to delayed pain after an accident is shock. When the body goes into shock, it’s essentially a defensive mechanism attempting to protect you from further injury and overwhelming your senses. During this time, the body may not feel pain because of how much trauma it has experienced.

How Long After a Car Accident Can Injuries Appear?

The length of time it takes an injury to appear after a car accident varies. It could be as little as minutes or hours, while in other cases, it can take days, or weeks, for symptoms to become apparent.

Symptoms That Show You May Be Experiencing Delayed Pain

A few symptoms may indicate you are experiencing delayed pain after an accident.

They include:

  • A headache that does not go away
  • Neck or back pain
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Feeling anxious or stressed out

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible. Afterward, contact a personal injury attorney who can help you determine if you have the right to file a claim and will fight for your rights.

man with back pain following a car accident

The Most Common Injuries With Delayed Symptoms

Car accidents can cause a variety of injuries. Some of the most common injuries that may have delayed symptoms include:

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

A TBI is sometimes classified as “mild” when there is no loss of consciousness. However, any injury to the brain is not mild, since it can cause lasting damage to your brain and change the way you think and live your life.

Some symptoms of a mild TBI include:

  • Headache that does not go away
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Memory problems


Whiplash occurs when the head and neck are quickly forced backward, then forward in a whip-like motion. This can stretch and damage the ligaments and tendons in your neck. Whiplash can be a mild neck injury, but it can also cause lasting damage.

Some symptoms of whiplash include:

  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Decreased range of motion in the neck
  • Headaches, especially at the base of your skull

Back Injuries

Back and spine injuries can range in severity from mild to life-threatening. It’s possible that you may not realize how severe your back injury is until days or weeks later, which could be dangerous.

Some symptoms of back injuries include:

  • Back pain or stiffness
  • Loss of sensation, tingling, or numbness in your arms or legs
  • Weakness in your arms or legs
  • Difficulty walking

Broken Bones

whiplash pain from car accident

When you break a bone, it is not always the case that you will feel pain immediately. Some people don’t feel any pain at all. But even if you do not feel pain, your broken bone could be causing internal bleeding and other damage that could require immediate medical attention.

Some symptoms of a broken bone or fracture include:

  • Pain or tenderness in the area around the injury
  • Swelling around the injured area
  • Bruising around the injured area
  • Difficulty moving the injured area

Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue damage is any harm to your muscles, tendons, or ligaments. This can include muscle strain and tears in these tissues. Soft tissue injuries can be mild or signify a more serious injury that requires surgery.

Some symptoms of soft tissue injuries include:

  • Pain and tenderness anywhere in your body
  • Swelling around the injured area
  • Bruising around the injured area
  • Stiffness or reduced range of motion in the affected joint or joints

Neck and Shoulder Pain

Poor posture or sitting in a car for too long can often cause pain in the neck and shoulders. This is especially true if you are involved in an accident where your vehicle is rear-ended, as this causes your head to be thrown forward suddenly, putting undue stress on your neck and shoulder muscles.

Some symptoms of shoulder or neck pain include:

  • Pain in your neck and shoulders that does not go away, even when you rest
  • Stiffness in the affected area(s)
  • Headaches at the base of your skull or behind your eyes

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

After any traumatic event, it is normal to feel some stress or anxiety. However, if these symptoms persist for more than a month and are interfering with your daily life, you may have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Some symptoms of PTSD include:

  • Intense flashbacks or memories of the accident
  • Nightmares or sleeping problems
  • Feeling constantly on edge or irritable
  • Difficulty concentrating or focusing

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to seek help from a medical professional. PTSD can be treated, and early diagnosis and treatment is crucial for preventing long-term damage.

These are just a few car accident injuries that may cause delayed pain. Nerve damage, abdominal pain, and head injuries may go unnoticed for days following a car crash.

Can I Still File a Personal Injury Claim for Delayed Injuries?

Yes, you can still file a personal injury claim for delayed injuries. However, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible so that we can begin gathering evidence and building your case. The sooner you file, the more likely you will receive compensation for your injuries.

trauma following an accident

Hire an Auto Accident Lawyer for Delayed Pain After a Car Accident

If you are experiencing any pain after a car accident, you should seek legal advice as soon as possible, as you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries.

A car accident attorney can help you file a claim and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf. If the insurance company does not offer a fair settlement, the personal injury lawyer can file a lawsuit on your behalf.

What Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Can Do For You

The Washington, D.C. car accident lawyers at Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. have a proven track record of success helping clients obtain the maximum compensation possible for injuries they have suffered due to the negligence of others. Our firm has consistently demonstrated we have the expertise needed to help our clients see that justice is served. We have the resources needed to conduct thorough investigations of all the circumstances contributing to a motor vehicle accident, gathering the evidence to establish liability and negligence.

Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. has achieved more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements, and our attorneys have more than a century of combined legal experience. Two of our partners are certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy. Our firm has also earned the highest AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell®, the most respected attorney-ranking service organization in the United States. Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. attorneys work passionately on behalf of our clients to help them secure fair compensation – there is no type of case that is too complex for us to litigate.

Determining the Value of Your Case

Many factors go into determining the value of your case. These include medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Our attorneys have experience evaluating cases just like yours to determine what they may be worth and will work hard to get you fair compensation for your injuries.

Here are a few of our case results:

  • $6 million for a client who suffered a brain injury after being involved in a rear-end collision.
  • $4.8 million for a severely injured client after another vehicle struck his motorcycle.
  • $1.9 million for a client who suffered a permanent back injury due to a car accident.
  • $1.5 million for a client who had to undergo multiple surgeries after a negligent motorist cut off his motorcycle.
  • $1 million settlement obtained on behalf of our 19-year-old client who was a passenger in a car in which the driver lost control, causing a collision. As a result, our client suffered extensive brain damage with cognitive impairment. He was in a coma for an extended period of time. Although he has regained consciousness, he is unable to care for himself. The law firm asked the Court to appoint him a guardian to care for him. The law firm is helping to establish a special needs trust so that the proceeds from the settlement will be protected against any medical liens.
  • $1 million settlement on behalf of a client that suffered a brain injury when the driver of the car in which he was a passenger lost control of his vehicle.

Contact an Accident Lawyer Today

If you are looking for the highest level representation available for your personal injury case, turn to Chaikin, Sherman, Cammarata & Siegel, P.C. Our firm has helped clients recover more than $500 million in compensation, and we have more than 100 years of combined legal experience

All of our partners are recognized by Washington D.C. Super Lawyers®, and three of our partners have been rated as “Top Lawyers”  by The Washingtonian Magazine®, In addition, the law firm has been ranked  as ‘Best Law Firm’ by U.S. News and World Report, and received the highest AV® Rating from Martindale-Hubbell® Three of our partners have also served as presidents of the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington, D.C.

We work to help our clients obtain fair settlement offers to compensate them for the injuries they’ve suffered, but our attorneys are extremely well-equipped to go to trial if needed. Call (202) 659-8600  or contact us online to get the proven legal representation you deserve.

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