Common Car Accident Injuries

By Matt Lalande in Car Accidents on March 28, 2022

Common Car Accident Injuries

Common Car Accident Injuries in Ontario

Car accidents are a leading cause of traumatic injury and death in North America. Often, they may require an experienced car accident lawyer to help ensure that injuries and damages are taken care of they way they deserve. Remember, during a car accident, impact energy is transferred from the motor vehicle to whatever it hits, be it another car, truck, motorcycle or a stationary object. This transfer of energy, depending on variables that alter states of motion, can cause extremely serious personal injuries that canseriously injured a victim and permanently interrupt a person’s ability to enjoy life and earn income. While some minor car accident injuries often resolve within a short time with or without medical treatment, more serious injuries might result in some level of permanent physical disability, such as the following:

Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injuries are devastating injuries that can have serious consequences to both the victim and those that surround him. Within moments, an active independent person experiences a profound and traumatic life change, becoming dependent on others, requiring a lifetime of help and care.

Spinal cord injuries are complete or incomplete injuries. A complete spinal cord injury happens when the affected car accident victim becomes unable to move and suffers sensory loss below the point of the lesion (injury)—resulting in complete paraplegia (paralysis of the lower half of the body) or complete quadriplegia (paralysis of the entire body from the neck down). 

With an incomplete spinal cord injury, the spinal cord injury’s overall functions are only partially compromised. For example, car accident victims may retain some sensation below the lesion, move their limbs, control some muscles (but not others) and feel pain. Unfortunately, many car accident victims that suffer incomplete spinal cord injuries have lifelong issues with chronic pain.

Spinal cord injuries require a lifetime of care. You can read more here on the requirements that a spinal cord injury victim will more likely than not require throughout his or her lifetime, from rehabilitation to quality and cost of living considerations.

Your spinal cord injury lawyer and lifecare planners will project the cost of your future care. Spinal cord injury litigation is extremely complicated—make sure you speak to a Hamilton spinal cord injury litigation expert before communicating with any insurance company.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) presents in different forms ranging from mild alterations of consciousness, slowed thinking, and development to an unrelenting comatose state and death. Brain injury trauma can cause epidural, subdural, subarachnoid, or intracerebral hemorrhage or hematoma; diffuse axonal injury resulting from shearing injury; and open skull fractures with concurrent brain injury. Serious traumatic brain injuries can completely change a person’s life.

For example, a person may develop slowed thinking, slowed speech, stuttering, balance difficulties, drowsiness, fatigue issues, mood changes, forgetfulness, memory difficulties, convulsions, seizures, vision problems, hearing problems, or loss of smell or taste. Psychiatry journals note that up to one in five individuals develop serious mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, dementia, and other serious cognitive issues.

Also important to remember is that a traumatic brain injury doesn’t just affect the actual car accident victim; it can transform the lives of entire families. Depending upon the severity of the victim’s injury, families may have to make considerable changes to the way they live, such as becoming part-time or full-time caregivers. Many brain-injured victims need and require 24 supervision.

The blow to your brain caused by a collision, jolt to the head, or penetrating wound is one that can result in a great variety of symptoms. Concussions from a fall can lead to permanent changes in personality and the level of irritability that a person has, which can impact their professional and personal lives from the time of their injury onward. Moderate to severe brain injury can require lifelong treatment, rehabilitation, and medications. The accurate measurement of your damages from your injury requires the computation of not only your emergency room bills, but the cost of all procedures and treatment you will need for the remainder of your life due to your injury.

Car accidents can cause injuries that are not easy to recover from – and others that the victim will never recover from. Seeking compensation for your injuries can make you whole, as if the injury had not occurred. When an accident and injury permanently disables you, this is impossible, but damages can at least make you financially whole.

Neck and Back Injuries Requiring Surgery

Back injuries are very common in car accidents, however serious back injuries, resulting in multilevel disc herniation or disc bulges, can at times require surgical intervention. If a car accident caused severe back severe injuries, speak to a car accident lawyer sooner rather than later. Typical back surgeries following a car accident can include a spinal fusion, a laminectomy, kyphoplasty, or discectomy.

Femur Fractures, Hip Fractures, and Hip Replacements

In T-bone type collisions, femur fractures, hip fractures requiring total hip replacement are quite common, statistically. If car accident victims are older, they can experience a dramatic decline in health, especially if that person suffers from multiple ailments or chronic conditions at the same time, such as diabetes.

Femur fractures—the body’s longest and strongest bone, can be classified either as transverse fractures, oblique fractures, spiral fractures comminuted fractures, and open fractures. Typically broken femurs require external fixation hardware, intramedullary nailing (which is the method that most surgeons using Canada), or plates and screws. Normally femur fractures result in significant scarring. If the car accident happened at high velocity and significantly damaged the hip, the victim may require a partial or total hip replacement.

Serious Knee Injuries

Knee joint injuries are extremely common in high-velocity head-on collisions, or pedestrian accidents. In fact, according to a recent article published by Forensic Science International, up to 60 percent of pedestrian victims in traffic accidents suffer knee joint injuries. They can no doubt lead to disabling long-term issues such as arthritis and osteoarthritis. Although knee osteoarthritis typically progresses slowly, individuals with a history of joint trauma are more likely to develop knee osteoarthritis about 10 years earlier than individuals without joint trauma.

Tibial plateau fractures may occur in car accidents. Fractures of proximal tibia comprise only 1.2 percent of all fractures but are challenging to manage and hard to recover from. The tibial plateau in the knee is a major load-bearing area of the human body.

Tibial plateau fractures involve the upper end of the tibial bone that carries the body’s weight. Any fractures in the upper end of the tibia can damage the knee joint’s weight-bearing functions. Tibial plateau fractures are common in pedestrian accidents and are often called “bumper accidents” due to the vehicle’s bumper hitting the pedestrian on the leg.

Broken Bones and Fractures

Serious orthopedic injuries are common in high-impact car and pedestrian accidents. The most common fractures that we see are to the arm, wrist, femur, ankle, and skull. If a car accident caused fractures that needed surgery and you lost income and enjoyment of life, you may seek compensation.

Facial and skull fractures are more prominent in severe accidents or when victims did not wear seatbelts.

Some bone fractures require painful surgeries, such as open reduction and internal fixation. Doctors reposition the bone fragments surgically to their normal alignment and then hold them together with plates and screws, or long nails down the bone marrow in the centre of the bone.

Joint injuries, with or without associated disruption of the articular surface, frequently lead to a debilitating condition known as acute post-traumatic arthritis. Post-traumatic arthritis develops after acute direct trauma to the joints. Physical trauma may also cause chronic inflammatory arthritis.

Psychological Injuries

Psychological distress is quite prevalent following a serious car accident. Psychological trauma is just as bad, if not worse than physical injuries in many aspects, particularly if the injury is life-changing and severe. It’s not uncommon for car accident victims to suffer psychological injuries such as depression, elevated anxiety, driving phobia, post-traumatic stress disorder, social withdrawal, thoughts of suicide, irritability, loneliness, anger, and impatience.

Elevated rates of depression and anxiety and high levels of pain and fatigue are common with people who suffer a traumatic brain injury or a spinal cord injury, leading to reduced quality of life.

For victims of spinal cord injury or amputation, there is more often than not a major grieving process that one goes through in coming to terms with their loss and accepting the reality of life as it is today. A depressed mood and negative psychological state are very common and often warrant long-term therapeutic psychosocial adjustment. People that are involved in life-changing car accidents, or car accidents that result in near-death experiences, often never return to be the same person. Men, in particular, who suffer serious injuries and are no longer able to work, often become highly depressed, irritable and suffer serious psychological complications due to their inability to produce and protect their family and loved ones.

Research has also found elevated psychological distress in victims whose insurance company has refused to provide them with proper assistance, unreasonably cut off or delayed their medical and rehabilitation therapy, and insurance companies that refuse to accept and /or minimize their post-accident debilitating condition when considering a compensation claim.

Psychological distress, combined with physical injury, often results in substantial suffering that can continue years after the crash—and if left untreated, or treated improperly, could eventually become a chronic mental disorder.


Serious car accidents can also result in traumatic amputation. A traumatic amputation is the surgical or traumatic separation of a limb or appendage from the body. Traumatic amputations remain one of the most emotionally disturbing injuries car accident victims suffer. Upper extremities are vulnerable during rollover accidents, especially if the positioning of an arm is on the open window. Traumatic amputations can also involve infection, phantom limb pain, psychological distress, and muscle weakness.

Amputation is an irreversible surgical option that may result in physically challenged and bodily disfigurement—and emotionally devastating for the victims. The loss of a body part and change in lifestyle options, work, and other activities of daily living often cause a victim to be at risk of developing a severe depressive disorder. Often, accidents leave the victim with multiple negative psychological factors such as feelings of loss, self-stigma, difficulty coping with the impairment, embarrassment, social isolation, and the lack of emotional support.

Shoulder Injuries

Car accident-related shoulder injuries are tremendously common. Typically, in serious car accidents, victims can suffer a combination of injuries, including torn rotator cuff tendons (supraspinatus, infraspinatus) fractured collarbones, fractured upper humerus, fractured shoulder blade, torn biceps, muscles torn from the bone, and ligament damage. Often shoulder surgery is required to help improve a victim’s ability to lift, carry, reach, restore range of motion and reduce pain. Unfortunately, shoulder injuries can result in life-long disability.

Internal Injuries

In high-impact head-on collisions, accident victims may suffer seatbelt-related injuries, severe internal organ injuries, traumatic abdominal wall hernias, tears in the abdominal wall muscles, internal bleeding, and collapsed lungs.

In addition, a car accident victim can suffer a ruptured abdominal aorta, otherwise called an abdominal aorta aneurysm. Typically most car accident victims that suffer an abdominal aorta aneurysm do not survive.

Fatality and Wrongful Death

If another driver killed your loved one, you may have a valid claim for wrongful death against the insurance company that insured the driver that caused the accident. Unlike personal injury cases, where damages for compensation and lost wages focus on the hurt individual, the surviving dependents (the family) of those killed in fatal accidents in Ontario may seek compensation.

Dependents in Ontario are a spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents, brothers, and sisters of the deceased person. Dependents in a wrongful death case may recover both pecuniary damages (compensation easily calculated in financial terms) and non-pecuniary damages (compensation that is not so easy to calculate, such as pain and suffering). However, in practice, typically only the spouse and children of the person who died can recover pecuniary damages such as the loss of income.

Distracted Driving Is a Leading Cause of Injury & Death on the Roads

One of the leading causes of deaths and fatalities on the roads today is distracted driving, as nearly half of Canadians admit to using a smartphone while driving. Distracted driving can result from any activity while driving that takes your attention away from the road, including using a smartphone for any purpose, texting, chatting with a passenger, or using the in-dash display to surf the radio. Whatever a driver is doing that distracts them in the moments before an accident can be the cause of the accident. If a distracted driver hits you, you are entitled to compensation.

How do you know what the other driver did just before they hit you? A car accident lawyer from Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers can often find out for you. One of the key benefits of having a lawyer by your side as soon as possible after your accident is to ensure that the evidence you need to determine how the other drivers were at fault is collected. You might not know how to collect evidence or depose witnesses, but your lawyer does and will put this knowledge to work in support of the best possible outcome in your case.

Drunk Drivers are Always Liable for the Harm They Cause

On the roads of Ontario each day, drunk driving kills several people. All drunk driving accidents are preventable, and if you have been in an accident with a drunk driver and suffered an injury, you are entitled to damages. The decision to get behind the wheel while intoxicated is illegal. When a driver actively breaks the law causes an accident, they must pay for the damages they cause.

An experienced car accident lawyer has worked on enough drunk driving cases to ensure that you collect the full damages you deserve if an intoxicated driver hits you.

How Much is My Car Injury Worth?

This is a common question. These are the first basic prerequisites to collecting damages, injury, and damages that result. The cause of the accident must be someone or something else. If you were the cause, you’d simply be contacting your own insurance company. When you are in an accident caused by someone or something else and experience injury, there are costs associated with that injury, and you should receive full compensation for your damages.

There are some norms when negotiating with insurance companies and deciding on settlements. After a broken bone, your car accident attorney from Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers will apply their knowledge and experience from related cases to determine a fair amount to cover the costs and other damages associated with your injury. Your damages will cover the damage to your vehicle and property, your medical bills, and your lost wages and income linked to the accident.

What Does an Accident and Injury Lawyer Do for Me?

Coverage for your damages does not kick in automatically, but rather you must file a claim. Collecting what you are entitled to means that you must accurately calculate your claim’s value, properly file the claim, and support it with sufficient evidence. This is what Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers do for you.

They step into your shoes and accurately calculate, demand, and collect the full compensation you are entitled to. We handle all the communications and negotiations with the insurance company and opposing party so that you can focus on recovering from your injuries while we focus on recovering the full compensation you are entitled to. The best thing you can do for yourself is to focus on your recovery.

When Should I Contact Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers?

The time to contact your accident and injury lawyer from Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers is as soon as possible after you have received emergency medical care for your injury. This is because of several factors, but mainly it helps to make sure you get the evidence you need. To accurately measure your damages, we will need to assess the extent of your lost income, the future effects of your injuries on your life, and the pain and suffering you experienced from your injuries.

No matter what type of injury you sustained – and whether it is listed above on this page or not – you should never hesitate to learn about your legal rights. The sooner you have an attorney on your side, the sooner you will be on the fast track to accurately calculate what you are entitled to and collect it so that you can get on with your life.

Have You Suffered Life-Changing Injuries in a Car Accident?

Lalande Personal Injury Lawyers focus on quality client care and overall case outcome. Our firm aims to provide you with valuable legal guidance and representation to help safeguard your family and future. Ontario is not a victim-friendly province, and car accident law and insurance are extremely complicated.

Our Hamilton car accident lawyers have assisted many claimants in the same situation and circumstances as you. Contact us for a free no-obligation consultation. We are happy to answer your questions and provide you with an opinion on your potential claim. Feel free to fill out our contact form or call us 24/7 at (905) 333-8888 in the local Hamilton / Burlington / Niagara areas, or anywhere in Ontario at 1-844-LALANDE no matter where you are in Ontario, for more information.

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