Soft Tissue Injury
Soft tissue injuries can cause chronic pain and permanent impairments. However, insurance companies often treat claims for soft tissue injuries as “minor” injuries. The reason is that soft tissue injuries do not show up on some diagnostic tests like broken bones, organ damage, and other injuries.
Soft tissue injuries occur from car accidents, slip and fall accidents, and other accidents. Tissue damage can prevent you from working and performing other daily tasks.
Accident victims deserve to be treated fairly and compensated for the damages caused by soft tissue injuries. Our Tifton personal injury lawyers help you file claims and pursue settlements and jury verdicts for all types of soft tissue injuries.
What Are Soft Tissue Injuries?
The musculoskeletal system includes bones and soft tissues, such as tendons, muscles, ligaments, and cartilage. Soft tissues are throughout all parts of the body. A soft tissue injury is a damage to these tissues.
Common soft tissue injuries include:
Blunt Force Trauma
Accidents that result in blunt force trauma can cause cells in soft tissues to bleed or rupture. Examples of accidents causing blunt force trauma include:
- Being struck by an object in a construction accident
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Defective product injuries
- Slips, trips, and falls
- Workplace accidents
Blunt force trauma can cause contusions (bruises). It can also cause damage to the cartilage.
Hyperextension injuries cause the soft tissues to be stretched beyond their limits. The result is tearing and shearing of the soft tissues. Hypertension injuries include whiplash, torn cartilage, sprains, and strains.
Car accidents are a common cause of hypertension injuries. However, falls, sports injuries, and recreational accidents can also cause hypertension injuries.
Penetrating injuries occur when an object penetrates the skin causing an open wound. The result is damage to the soft tissue surrounding the puncture wound. Abrasions and lacerations are examples of penetrating injuries.
Dog bites commonly result in penetrating injuries. A penetrating injury can result in an infection that spreads throughout the body.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Soft Tissue Injuries
Diagnosis of a soft tissue injury can be more difficult because the injuries might not appear on imagining tests. However, severe soft tissue injuries could appear on MRIs or CT Scans. Doctors often diagnose soft tissue injuries by examining the patient and noting the patient’s symptoms.
Medical treatment for a soft tissue injury depends on the severity and type of injury. Some soft tissue injuries can be treated with rest, ice, compression, and elevation. However, some types of injuries require surgery or physical therapy.
Doctors might prescribe medication to treat soft tissue injuries. Medications prescribed for soft tissue injuries include, but are not limited to, anti-inflammatory medications and pain medicine.
Symptoms of Soft Tissue Injuries
You can experience a wide range of symptoms from soft tissue injuries. The symptoms are often self-reported symptoms such as:
- Pain and swelling
- Muscle spasms and/or cramping
- Joint pain and/or instability
- Stiffness and limited motion
- A knot or lump at the injury site
It is essential to report all symptoms, regardless of the severity. Your medical records need to reflect the symptoms. Also, reporting your symptoms helps your physicians accurately diagnose the injuries.
What Types of Damages Can I Receive for a Soft Tissue Injury?
Georgia personal injury laws provide for compensatory and non-compensatory damages. Compensatory damages for soft tissue injury claims include economic damages such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages and benefits
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Rehabilitative therapies
- Reconstructive surgery
- Personal care
- Diminished earning capacity
Compensatory damages also include non-economic damages for pain and suffering. You can seek a financial award for your:
- Physical pain
- Scarring and disfigurement
- Mental anguish
- Disabilities and impairments
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
- A decrease in your quality of life
A jury could award punitive damages for a soft tissue injury lawsuit. Punitive damages are not compensatory. Instead, these damages “punish” a party for their behavior.
However, punitive damages are only awarded in a small number of personal injury lawsuits. You must prove that the defendant’s conduct was intentional or grossly negligent.
Why Is the Insurance Company Blaming Me for My Soft Tissue Injury?
Insurance companies fight soft tissue injury claims in several ways. A common defense is to blame the accident victim for causing their injuries.
Georgia has a modified contributory fault law. You can be partially at fault for the cause of your injury and still recover compensation for damages. However, you cannot recover any money if you are more than 50% at fault.
Furthermore, if you are less than 50% at fault, your compensation is reduced by your level of fault. Therefore, if a jury finds you were 20% at fault for the cause of a car accident, your compensation for a whiplash injury is reduced by 20 percent.
An insurance company uses contributory fault to limit the amount of money it must pay for your soft tissue injury claim. It may also allege that you failed to mitigate damages if you did not seek prompt medical care.
What Is the Deadline for Filing Soft Tissue Injury Claims in Georgia?
The type of accident determines the deadline for filing a claim for soft tissue injuries. The statute of limitations for most personal injury claims is typically two years after the accident date. However, there are numerous exceptions to the general rule.
An exception to the statute of limitations could lengthen or shorten the time to file a claim. Therefore, you should talk with a Tifton personal injury attorney now. Seeking prompt legal advice after an injury or accident is the best way to protect your right to fair compensation for damages.
Schedule Your Free Consultation with a Tifton Personal Injury Lawyer
Insurance companies often deny soft tissue injury claims. Call (229) 386-1376 to contact The King Firm attorneys to schedule a free consultation. Our legal team fights to get you the money you deserve after an accident or injury.