Of all the traumatic injuries someone might suffer in a car crash, a broken bone is far from the worst. Yes, fractures are undeniably painful and require quite some time for the body to heal, but most people expect to make a complete recovery after breaking a bone as a result of a car wreck.
Yet, the relatively dismissive attitude that many people have toward broken bones can do them a disservice after a collision, as it may prevent them from seeking appropriate compensation based on their circumstances. Broken bones can actually cost thousands of dollars, sometimes exceeding what insurance will pay by a significant amount.
Medical treatment can be expensive
Even a simple fracture after a crash might require an ambulance ride to the hospital. Worse fractures, like compound fractures, where the bone pierces the skin, may put someone in need of emergency medical care. Severe fractures require not just X-rays and bone setting but possibly also surgery and immobilization. The medical costs for treating a fracture range from a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars in extreme cases.
Lost wages can add up quickly
Even a basic break to someone’s arm or leg could take roughly two months to heal. Even after the bone sets, an individual may require several weeks before they regain full functionality because of the lengthy immobilization of the affected body part.
If someone works in a physically-demanding profession, they may not be able to return to work until they complete rehabilitation after the injury, which might mean several months of lost wages. There are other factors to consider, including the cost of physical or occupational therapy and other rehabilitative services following the bone healing initially. People may need new clothing to accommodate slings and casts, as well as some household medical equipment.
Occasionally, broken bones do lead to significant, lasting medical consequences. Someone who develops complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) after a fracture heals is a prime example of how a seemingly simple injury could turn into a permanent, debilitating medical condition. Seeking legal guidance and better understanding why broken bones can be expensive may help those who are trying to pursue fairly-valued compensation after a recent car crash.