Guest Post : The Link Between Car Wrecks and Chronic Illness

car accident @ vestavia hillsMany people are unaware that there is growing evidence that some traumatic injuries are being linked to the onset of autoimmune disorders such as lupus, fibromyalgia, and thyroid disorders. This trauma is often caused by car accidents involving injuries to the head, neck or spine, and one type of car accident that contributes to this type of problem disproportionately is a rear end collision. 

A rear end collision can be devastating, and to find out more about the effects of a rear end collision, you can search online for a car accident lawyer Raleigh and read the following: “A hit-from-behind accident often results in a hyperextension/hyperflexion injury to the neck, or whiplash.” Likewise, mild whiplash can cause minor muscle strains that heal quickly, but a more severe instance of it can produce chronic pain and other symptoms and conditions that are long lasting and persistent.

Take thyroid disorders, for example. There have been studies linking car accidents to later development of this disorder. In fact, studies conducted by NCBI1 found a correlation between auto accident trauma and thyroid lesions that later developed into a chronic condition long after the victim’s injuries had healed. They also seemed to experience pain that originated from nowhere. More importantly, doctors were baffled because all thyroid examinations on the test subjects were coming back normal.2

That’s an important fact because accident victims in these type of cases often inherit a chronic illness that has a cloud of uncertainty surrounding it. Imagine having a healthy thyroid gland before the accident, and then developing a chronic condition that may require treatment all your life. Any uncertainty about your diagnosis can hinder treatment, too. This little gland in your neck has an important role in your body as it regulates calcium balance and metabolism-two vital functions in your body. An impaired thyroid can lead to a host of health issues; a few serious ones being heart disease, depression, infertility, and sexual dysfunction.

Also importantly, a person who has a thyroid disorder that is being treated adequately, and whose symptoms are under control, can develop other autoimmune diseases — specifically those that have autoimmune thyroid disease. Studies have linked the disease to later development of systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis.3 In other words, the car wreck that caused your injuries that weakened your system has left you open to, not one, but several autoimmune disorders.

Yet, the correlation between these types of injuries and the onset of autoimmune disorders is not something that many doctors are wanting to admit even exist. They don’t want to connect these events because there have not been any recognized studies on this subject. Natural health practitioners and accident victims have made the connection, though, and there is a lot of evidence that points to a direct connection between accident injuries and the onset of these disorders. It’s a subject matter that needs more consideration by the medical community.

Proving a Connection Between These Events During a Compensation Case

Accident victims that begin to experience autoimmune disorder symptoms after a wreck should consult with their attorney immediately. Even if you already have a claim that is in process, your attorney can amend the claim to include the new disorder. Your distress from it should be counted as part of your compensation settlement.

The insurance provider will most likely deny the claim. These companies are trying very hard to ignore the evidence that traumatic injuries can create autoimmune disorders. This fact, if finally confirmed by the mainstream medical industry, will increase the amount of compensation they will have to pay the individuals suffering from this. Insurance companies don’t like to do this because it hurts their bottom line.

Insurance companies are not in the habit of freely making compensation payments for injuries that they can’t easily confirm, and they are in even less of a habit of paying for those that cannot be absolutely confirmed. However, this does not mean that you cannot successfully make a claim for compensation. It only means that it will be a little bit more of a challenge for you and your attorney. There are things that you can do to help your case such as:

Gather Medical Information

You want to show as much evidence as possible that you did not suffer from this disorder prior to your accident. Your attorney will also request that you are medically evaluated by an additional doctor for a second opinion.

Follow a Medical Treatment Plan

Make sure that you are doing everything possible to help manage these disorders. Insurance companies will openly accuse you of trying to create a disability at their cost. If you show that you are actively seeking treatment, this cannot be said about your case.

Search for Information

The more evidence you gather about similar situations, the better case you will build for yourself. Be diligent about finding information and providing it to your attorney.

Create a Social Website

Not only will this place you in direct contact with other people that are suffering from the same thing, it will also be a very public outcry about the situation that the insurance companies cannot ignore. Insurance companies will be monitoring your social media for any signs that you are “faking” this illness.

In the end, you should be successful in making your claim. Do not let this, however, be the end of your fight to get medical answers and acknowledgement. This type of event happens too often, and the more people band together to fight the system and demand research, the more likely it will happen.

Holly Chavez is the author of this article and has the autoimmune disorder, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. She has used search words like “car accident lawyer Raleigh” to find out more information online about the severity of auto accidents and its effect on your body. She knows that autoimmune disorders can be tough enough to deal with on their own and can’t even imagine how bad it would be to cope with a car wreck and related injuries on top of that.

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/digitizedchaos/5913317383/

  1. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12917086
  2. http://www.helpmychronicpain.com/blog/bid/118986/The-Connection-Between-Your-Auto-Accident-And-Thyroid-Problems
  3. http://rheumatology.oxfordjournals.org/content/40/3/353.long
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One thought on “Guest Post : The Link Between Car Wrecks and Chronic Illness

  1. Thank you so much for this article. I too was in a horrific car accident as a passenger and my side was hit by jeep going 50 miles an hour. I lost consciousness and had a traumatic brain injury. I have now developed an autoimmune disease called Scleroderma, chronic pain in mouth, plus I recently developed lumps and masses in the area where my seat belts was located and where passenger door hit me in the side. The new areas feel like they are affecting my nerves because I have constant pain. I agree it’s very hard to get the medical field to correlate the problems with the accident. I was so healthy before the accident. I went once a year for annual check-up and now I go from specialist to specialist trying to get someone to help me. Frustrating.

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