Sometimes after a motorcycle accident, you may be told you are fine even though you are in pain and feel injured. In some cases, the doctor may agree that you are injured but feel your injuries are mild while you believe they are severe. This can be both frustrating and upsetting and can also affect the amount of compensation you might receive for your case. However, there are ways you can work with a motorcycle accident attorney to demonstrate the extent of your injuries.
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I recently represented a client I’ll refer to as Brian who injured his back in a motorcycle accident. When I met him, he was obviously hurt. He walked gingerly and had difficulty lowering himself onto a chair. Even while seated he seemed uncomfortable, shifting his position over and over again in an attempt to relieve the pain.
Brian had been struck from behind at an intersection. The crash knocked him off his bike and he suffered from severe road rash. In addition, he reported back pain and was transported to the hospital. In the emergency room, they doctors assessed his injuries and ordered X-rays and a CT scan. The tests came back clear, however the emergency room doctor ordered Brian to visit an orthopedic specialist.
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The orthopedic doctor reviewed the imaging tests and examined Brian. He diagnosed Brian with a back strain and ordered him to start a course of physical therapy. Brian completed the physical therapy but still felt a lot of pain. He found it difficult to work and was becoming depressed due to the constant pain he was experiencing.
Six months later, Brian’s pain was not quite as severe as it had been, but it was still bothering him. Each evening he came home from his work as a welder feeling as if all he could do was sit on the sofa and take a couple of pain medicines. It was a rough situation.
Even though Brian’s doctor performed a couple additional tests, he was unable to explain Brian’s ongoing pain. He felt the injury should have been resolved.
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This was a complex case. Brian’s medical records clearly indicated that he had a back injury, however he seemed to be experiencing more and longer-lasting pain than should have occurred with a simple strain. In a case like this, it can be difficult to get fair and just compensation from the insurance company.
The insurance company in this case argued that this was a simple injury that should have been resolved in short order. But in Brian’s case, the pain was ongoing. When working with Brian, I reviewed his medical documentation. I was able to demonstrate that Brian had faithfully attended all his medical appointments, undergone every test that was suggested to him, and taken off from work when told to do so.
In addition to having Brian make a diary of his pain and how it was affecting his life, I suggested that he see another orthopedic doctor for a second opinion. This doctor suggested an MRI which showed that Brian had two small cracks in the vertebra of his lower back. Due to these compression fractures of his spine, Brian had to wear a specialized back brace.
In addition to pain medication and the back brace, Brian was sent to another, more extensive course of physical therapy. After several more months he was feeling better and, although the pain was not gone completely, he felt pleased with his recovery.
Since Brian had required additional treatment and we were able to document a much more significant injury, we were able to get him more financial recovery than we would have been able to otherwise.
But even if Brian’s MRI had come back without demonstrating any further injuries, the fact that he continued to experience pain could be considered as a factor when working to recover financially. By continuing the follow up with the doctor, and by seeking a second opinion, Brian demonstrated that he was committed to healing.
Without an attorney representing you, it can be difficult to understand the value of your injuries. With over 30 years of experience representing injured bikers, I have seen countless injuries and have a strong understanding of the amount of compensation that is typical for each injury.
If you have been involved in a motorcycle crash and have questions concerning your injuries, contact me today at 1-800-MOTORCYCLE to discuss your case.