The force of a car crash could lead to many different kinds of severe injuries. If you compare it to a brain or spinal cord injury, a broken bone may not seem like a very serious medical issue. People can still work with broken bones and often recover fully with the right medical care.
However, some fractures can cause lasting medical issues and could lead to tens of thousands of dollars in medical treatment. One of the scenarios when a broken bone from a car crash will lead to extensive financial losses and a longer recovery is when the bone breaks into multiple pieces.
Also called a comminuted fracture, this kind of break requires a more careful approach to an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit. Otherwise, someone could be left with massive uncovered expenses.
You will need more medical intervention to heal
When your bone breaks cleanly in one place, a doctor can diagnose it with an x-ray and may be able to set it manually. They will then immobilize the body part with a cast and potentially provide you with pain management resources. After the cast comes off, physical therapy may be necessary to regain your strength and the range of motion lost while your body heals the broken bone.
Recovering from a comminuted fracture is much more difficult. There may be advanced imaging tests necessary to your diagnosis. You may require surgery for the doctor to set the bone. If there are small pieces of bone, you may require implanted pins or metal rods to reinforce the bone and stabilize it as it heals. You may require traction while in the hospital to ensure that you do not use the affected body part before your body recovers.
The overall cost for a comminuted fracture is much higher than a simple, stable fracture. Although car insurance in North Carolina generally includes $30,000 or more in medical coverage, that may not be enough with a severe fracture. Your stay in the hospital and surgery could cost more than that, and you may have wages that you lose to add to your claim as well.
Creating a realistic estimate of the costs you have incurred will help you seek appropriate compensation after a significant motor vehicle collision.