Types of Doctors – Accident victims may experience a wide array of injuries, and it’s prudent to have them treated as quickly as possible. In this way, damage that may cause medical issues over the long term can be avoided before it starts. According to the Law Office of James McKiernan, home to several Bakersfield injury lawyers, “what matters most is if you have an injury following an accident, you have to get seen by a medical professional.” First, it’s important to visit your primary care physician for treatment and then get follow-up exams. Next consult any specialist that your doctor recommends such as an orthopedic surgeon, a physical therapist or a chiropractor. If your injuries are moderate to severe, however, you should go directly to an emergency room and check with your primary care doctor later.
Primary Care Physician
Always visit your primary care doctor first after you have an accident. Even if you think you’re fine, you should still have your doctor examine you just to be sure you’re not injured. Sprains, strains, and cases of whiplash may require several days to show symptoms. Internal bleeding might not be evident right away until it becomes life-threatening. Even broken bones can be difficult to notice right after an accident. In any case, it’s critical to seek medical help as soon as any types of symptoms appear.
If Your Doctor Refers You to a Specialist
If, after seeing your primary care physician and getting a thorough exam, he or she refers you to a specialist, multiple options are available to help you recover and return to your normal routine as quickly as possible.
For example, your doctor may send you to an orthopedic surgeon for an evaluation if you’ve had a knee injury after a car crash. The surgeon might have x-rays, CAT scans, and other types of diagnostic evaluation done. If necessary, the surgeon will then send your primary care doctor a diagnostic report recommending that you have surgery to repair your knee. Your physician will then agree and obtain authorization for the operation from your insurer.
After you have the surgery, the orthopedic surgeon will send you to have physical therapy and post-surgical rehabilitation sessions. Once you’ve completed the physical therapy and rehabilitation regimes, the orthopedic surgeon will consult with you once again to check your condition. When you’ve reached the stage of full recovery or have experienced as much improvement as the surgeon deems possible, his or her work will be finished. Then you’ll be released back to the care of your primary physician, who will recommend an office visit as a follow-up procedure.
Injuries like those caused by car crashes can remain hidden, and not reveal pain or limited mobility issues until months or even years afterwards. In the case of auto accidents, what most people don’t realize is that even minor crashes can result in damage to the body’s soft tissues. And if left untreated this damage can eventually lead to chronic arthritis. Even when the car doesn’t absorb the full impact of the crash, the driver and passengers do. So, any time the body is jerked around during a collision, the chance of incurring an injury is present. Even minor fender benders can result in soft tissue injuries such as whiplash. In fact, more than half of all whiplash damage occurs in accidents where little or no vehicular damage occurred. For this reason, the only way to eliminate the possibility of injuries is to get medical attention.
Going to the hospital or your primary care doctor’s office is a smart way to protect your insurance coverage. However, in these places, injuries can be overlooked. If a hospital or family physician clears you of severe or life-threatening injuries, and you’re still in pain, seeking help from a chiropractor should be your next move. After an accident, hospitals are skillful at recognizing serious injuries, fractures, concussions, and other more noticeable signs of damage.
But if you’re released from the hospital with a clean bill of health and are still experiencing pain, you have a hidden injury. In such a case it would be wise to get a second opinion. This is where a chiropractor comes in. Chiropractors are trainee to spot these types of injuries. They can perform orthopedic and neurological assessments to reveal soft tissue damage and additional issues that other medical professionals may not detect.
If any injuries are uncover after these tests, your chiropractor will develop a care plan, personalized to suit you and your specific injuries. The plan might involve a series of chiropractic adjustments and occasionally deep tissue massage or trigger-point therapy sessions.