After an accident, you should see your primary care doctor, urgent care, an emergency room, or any number of qualified doctors who specialize in auto accident injuries near you for treatment and follow-up. These doctors may refer you to. Usually, the Emergency Room is not the answer, but if you have moderate to severe injuries, struck your head, are bleeding, or have a broken bone, you will need to go to the emergency room and follow up with your primary care physician afterward.
How Do I Know If I should See A Doctor Following a Car Accident?
The test I ask clients is: Do you feel the same today as you did the day before the accident? If the answer is, I feel fine. Then do not go to the doctor, but if you do not feel the same or you think you will eventually be fine, you should still see your doctor for an examination, just to make sure. Strains, sprains, and whiplashes can take several days to develop or manifest symptoms. Internal bleeding might not present signs right away until it is life-threatening. Even broken bones can be hard to detect at the scene of an accident.
Should I Go to the Emergency Room for Severe Injuries?
If you do not know if you should go to the Emergency Room, then you need to go. If the police say you need an ambulance, do not argue with them. Realize that you might be a little shell-shocked from the crash and that others can see things that you might not be able to observe or process right now. If you struck your head, you should go to the Emergency Room. Remember, Emergency personnel is looking at you from the perspective of an unbiased outsider. If you look badly hurt to a stranger, you probably need an ambulance.
When Should I Go to the Emergency Room After A Car Accident?
You should go to the emergency room after a car accident if you are feeling:
- Severe pain
- Shortness of breath
- Profuse bleeding
- Deep lacerations
- Broken bones
- Head injury
- Neck or back injury
- Loss of consciousness
- Confusion, or
- Any other symptom that concerns you as urgent
Do not drive yourself to the emergency room. If an ambulance is not an option, have someone drive you to the hospital if you need emergency treatment.
Where Are the Nearest Tampa Emergency Rooms for Car Accidents?
There are several Emergency Rooms in the Tampa Bay Area like:
- Tampa General Hospital – South Tampa, Ybor City, Davis Islands, Downtown (Trauma 1 Center)
- Memorial Hospital – South Tampa, Tampa, West Tampa
- Town ‘n Country Hospital – Town ‘n Country, Westchase, Drew Park
- St. Joseph’s Hospital (Main – Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd., Tampa), Tampa, West Tampa
- St. Joseph’s – North (Lutz, Carrollwood, Northdale, Odessa)
- St. Joseph’s – South Hillsborough (Brandon, Bloomingdale, Riverview, Gibsonton, Apollo Beach, Ruskin, Wimauma)
- Advent-Hospital – Fletcher North Tampa, University of South Florida, Temple Terrace
- Advent-Hospital – Carrollwood, West Tampa, Tampa, Town n’ Country
- Brandon Regional Hospital – Brandon, Valrico, Lithia
- Mease Countryside – Safety Harbor, Clearwater, Largo
- Morton Plant Hospital – Clearwater
What Happens If My Doctor Sends Me to A Specialist?
The specialist will do whatever the referring doctor asked him or her to look into. Usually, after a car accident, your doctor will ask the specialist to perform a consultation or workup to explore your condition within the specialist’s field, or to rule out something specific, such as an orthopedic surgeon checking to see if you have a herniated disc that needs to be surgically repaired. The term ‘rule out’ does not mean to prove that you do not have a particular injury. It means that your regular doctor wants the specialist to see if you have the condition.
After the specialist completes the tasks requested in the referral, he or she will send your primary care physician a report with her findings and recommendations. Your regular doctor will then decide the next steps for treatment. The next step might be for your doctor’s office to contact your insurance company for authorization to start treatment for your injuries. Your primary care physician will organize medical care for your injuries.
What Types Of Doctors Treat Injuries From Car Accidents?
Quite a few medical fields can become involved in the care and management of crash trauma. Some of these are:
- Emergency room physician
- Radiologist to read the x-rays, CAT scans, MRIs, and other imaging studies
- Trauma surgeon
- Orthopedic surgeon
- Neurologist or neurosurgeon
- Burn specialist
- Plastic surgeon
- General surgeon for internal injuries
- Physical, occupational, and vocational therapist
Is Surgery for Neck or Back Pain Necessary?
Not usually, but sometimes it is necessary. It is reasonable to consider spine surgery if the pain has not diminished after months of non-surgical treatment, if the pain does not respond to medication, or if you’re unable to complete basic daily activities like walking, household chores, standing, sleeping, etc then consider less conservative treatment and more invasive procedures like surgery. Some surgery options are minimally invasive (microdiscectomy for a herniated disc) and allow for quick recovery, while other types of surgery (a posterolateral fusion for degenerative disc disease) are more extensive.
Why Fernandez and Hernandez?
At Fernandez and Hernandez, you will meet with Martin Hernandez personally. If appropriate and in your best interests, Martin will discuss the case and what to expect from beginning to end with you. The Tampa personal injury attorneys at Fernandez and Hernandez are ready to represent you. Call us today at 813-229-5353 to get your no-cost, no-obligation consultation.