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A fracture could be more serious than you think

Perhaps you were on your way home after a long day at work. All you could think about was relaxing in your favorite chair with an adult beverage. Those plans suddenly disappeared when another vehicle rammed into yours. As the shock of what just happened began to wear off, you realized that you suffered a bone fracture.

After seeing the damage done to your vehicle and the vehicle that struck yours, you may feel lucky that you came away with only a fractured bone. However, what you may realize too late is that bone fractures can come with serious complications that could prolong your recovery period and leave you with permanent damage.

Early issues

In the hours and first days after your fracture, you may experience one or more of the following complications:

  • Nerve injury
  • Vascular injury
  • Compartment syndrome
  • Fracture blisters
  • Wound infection
  • Blood loss

Other early issues could arise depending on where the fracture is located. For instance, a fractured rib could lead to a pneumothorax, respiratory compromise or flail chest. Your age could also play a part in any complications you experience. For example, a hip fracture in an older person may lead to serious health issues.

Later issues

After treatment and as time goes on, other complications such as the following can develop:

  • Complex regional pain syndrome
  • Joint stiffness
  • Contractures
  • Avascular necrosis
  • Osteomyelitis
  • Myositis ossificans

The possibility exists that the bone may not heal properly, take too long to heal or fail to heal at all. Obviously, any of these early and later complications could extend your recovery time. In fact, you may not achieve a full recovery and have issues for the rest of your life.

What can you do?

Even if you recover enough to resume your life as close to normal as possible, you may still have limitations that prevent you from enjoying certain activities or undertaking certain tasks at work that you were able to perform prior to your injury.

If your accident was due to the negligence of the other driver, you may be able to pursue compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and other damages allowed under New Mexico law. The other party's insurance company may offer you a settlement, but it may not be in your best interests to take it, especially soon after the accident.

You have no way of knowing how your injuries will affect your life in the first few days or weeks following the crash, and you may be need more compensation than the settlement offer provides. It may make more sense to take the time to gain a full understanding of the potential value of your claim first. You may discover that litigation may be the only way for you to obtain the compensation you deserve.

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