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What is a late-onset injury?

Your body does not always show signs that something is wrong. After a traumatic event, such as a car crash, your body may not always make it evident that it has sustained an injury.

However, as the days pass, the signs that something is wrong may start to manifest. While some may become apparent soon after an accident, others may simmer under the surface. With adrenaline receding in the days after a crash, those aches and pains may warn you that there is damage that requires medical care. Keep an eye out for these delayed-onset injuries after an accident.

Do you have abdominal pain?

A stomach ache after a crash may point to something other than nerves or stress. Your abdomen may have suffered a blow from the seatbelt or airbag that may have given you internal damage. Sharp abdominal pains are one sign you should not ignore following an accident, especially if bruising appears. If a previous bruise gets black and spreads, it may indicate you have an active bleed somewhere in your abdomen.

When is a headache cause for concern?

A bruise or gash in the head is not the only indicator of brain trauma. Your brain may have gotten rattled by hitting the skull. A brain bleed may cause increased pressure and pain in the head that over-the-counter medication does not help. While the stress of a crash may certainly give you a headache, it should not grow in intensity or accompany other symptoms, such as:

  • Vomiting
  • Insomnia
  • Memory loss
  • Speech issues
  • Unconsciousness

In the hours after a car accident, you may fight the urge to seek medical care. Should you develop symptoms that worsen, you should make an appointment for an exam to ensure you do not have a delayed onset injury.


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