When you think of car accident injuries, broken bones and concussions are usually the common answers. However, eye injuries are an often overlooked result of a traumatic crash. A 2014 study in the Western Journal of Emergency Medicine on motor vehicle crash injuries found that from 2001 to 2008 approximately 75,028 eye injuries were treated in emergency departments across the U.S.
The impact an eye injury can have on your quality of life can be drastic. At Cordisco & Saile LLC, we take into account the full extent of damages that your injury causes both now and in the future. Before you accept compensation for your injury, let our attorneys review your case and explain your rights to recovery.
What are some common eye injuries from a car accident?
The eye injury report referenced above listed the following injuries as the five most prevalent from car accidents.
Contusions or Abrasions
This injury is also known as a black eye. A contusion occurs when the eye socket is struck, causing bruising and swelling. The injury may take 24 hours to appear and can cause the following:
It can usually be treated with ice packs to reduce swelling and then warm compresses for pain.
Glass, metal shards, and any other small objects that fly around the vehicle cabin during a crash can become lodged in the eye or trapped between the cornea and eyelid.
A foreign object trapped in the eye can cause:
- Puncture wounds
- Irritation of the eye
- Scarring of the cornea
Treatment involves removing the foreign body and treating any damage to the eye with medication to prevent infection and promote healing.
A hemorrhage occurs when a small blood vessel bursts in the eye. This injury causes the “bloodshot eyes” appearance. A blow to the head or eye socket can cause this type of injury. Hemorrhages are usually not painful, and the redness will clear up on its own as the blood is absorbed.
Most lacerations happen on the eyelid and might require stitches to heal. When a laceration occurs to the eye itself, it can cause partial or total loss of vision. These injuries to the sclera or cornea are usually surgically repaired and treated with antibiotics to prevent infection.
How does an eye injury affect my damages in a car accident injury claim?
While some of the eye injuries mentioned above will resolve with little treatment and in a short amount of time, injuries like lacerations and burns can permanently damage your vision.
While your eye is healing, you may be unable to work because of a loss of vision. If you sustain permanent vision damage or loss, it could impact your earning ability by preventing you from returning to your occupation.
A serious eye injury should qualify you to collect damages including:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Permanent vision loss
- Pain and suffering
Proving that you are eligible for these damages requires that you establish the following:
- The negligence of another party caused the accident.
- You sustained the eye injury in the accident.
- The eye injury caused quantifiable damages.
Proving negligence requires evidence showing the other party had a duty to keep you safe, such as another driver’s duty to drive responsibly and while alert. Then you must prove the other party breached that duty, causing you to sustain the eye injury. For example, a passenger car driver might allege that a motorcyclist wasn’t wearing seasonal protective motorcycle gear like goggles and say that the biker’s negligence was truly the reason s/he suffered an eye injury.
When the other driver tries to undermine your statement, you need a car accident lawyer with experience on your side to prove things, like that the eye injury resulted in damages and the value of your damages. You’ll need to supply information such as the cost of medical care and any time you lost at work because of injury recovery.
How can a lawyer help me prove damages from my car accident-related eye injury?
Because most eye injuries are considered minor, you will need a lawyer’s knowledge of the evidence and damage estimation process to prove you are entitled to compensation.
One of the common ways an eye can be injured is by impact from an airbag. If the force of the airbag causes your injury, the liable party’s lawyer may argue that your injuries were more the fault of the airbag rather than the negligent driver.
At Cordisco & Saile LLC we understand that even the smallest injury can cause long-term repercussions in your life after an accident. We take care to develop the necessary evidence to prove your damages and assess the long-term consequences of an eye injury on your life.
The loss of vision can be devastating and cause:
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Prevent you from returning to the work or hobbies you enjoy
The Use of Expert Witnesses in Eye Injury Claims
To prove the full extent of the damage your eye injury will have on your health and well-being, we may bring in an expert witness to testify on your behalf. Expert witnesses can include ophthalmologists and other doctors with extensive knowledge of the long-term effects of eye injuries.
We might also bring in a vocational expert to testify on your behalf regarding the impact an eye injury can have on your ability to work at your previous occupation or any other job for which you are qualified.
Get Help from Cordisco & Saile LLC
If you suffered an eye injury, our attorneys make sure you receive a fair settlement that accounts for your current damages as well as future projected damages. We have helped many Pennsylvania residents recover damages after car accidents, and we have seen firsthand the impact an eye injury can have on your livelihood.
If you would like to learn more about you legal rights to recovery of damages after an eye injury from a car accident, call us today to schedule a free consultation. Call 215-642-2335 to set up your free case evaluation.