What You Should Know If You Suffered an Eye Injury in a Vehicle Accident

doctor treating patient with black eyeIf you have an eye injury because you were in a car wreck that was not your fault, you will likely have medical expenses and other costs related to the accident. You might also be wondering what your life may be like going forward, especially if you have lost vision due to an eye injury.

Eye Injuries That Can Happen in a Car Accident

In most cases, eye injuries suffered in a car accident are the result of trauma, meaning something has hit your eye. This could be the steering wheel, the airbag, or debris, such as glass. Some injuries to the eye will heal over time, but some result in permanent damage. These are the most common types of eye injuries that occur because of a car wreck:

  • Black eye. When blood and other fluids collect in the space around the eye, the tissue can become swollen and bruised. Commonly referred to as a black eye, this usually occurs because accident victims hit the steering wheel or dashboard in the force of the crash. A deployed airbag can also cause bruising if it hits the face. Black eyes can affect vision. Although most people consider a black eye to be a minor injury, it can cause vision problems for victims. A black eye can also cover up other more serious injuries to the eye. Have your eye examined by a physician to determine just how serious your injury is and whether it is permanent. 
  • Penetration and laceration injuries. When debris such as shattered glass, broken plastic, or shards of metal fly around the car in the wake of a crash, eye injuries can occur if these foreign objects penetrate or lacerate the eye. This type of injury can be serious, even leading to permanent vision loss in some cases. Although doctors can usually remove the debris surgically, it often leaves behind damage that nothing can reverse.
  • Tears and detachments. With the impact of a car crash, the body is exposed to high forces that can cause retinal detachment. Accident victims might experience flashes of light and blurred vision immediately after the accident. Sometimes retinal detachment can be repaired, but you must seek medical treatment immediately.
  • Head injuries. Suffering a blow to the head can cause damage to the optic nerves and parts of the brain that control vision. 

Living With an Eye Injury After an Accident

Depending on the nature and severity of your eye injury, your quality of life can be greatly impacted. You might not be able to return to work while you wait for your eye to heal. If your vision is permanently damaged or lost, this can impact your ability to ever return to work. A severe eye injury might entitle you to the following damages:

  • Medical expenses
  • Future financial losses, if you will continue to need treatment
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Pain and suffering
  • Compensation if you’ve suffered permanent vision loss

You’ll need to prove that you are eligible for this compensation by proving the following:

  • The other party was negligent and caused the crash.
  • You sustained the eye injury as a result of the accident.
  • Your quality of life has been diminished as a result of your eye injury.

You Need a Lawyer on Your Side

The goal of any insurance company is to pay as little in damages as possible. When you are dealing with an eye injury, proving your case can be difficult. Unlike a broken bone, which is clearly indicated by an x-ray, documenting an eye injury can be an uphill battle. Having an experienced personal injury lawyer on your side to help you prove the severity of your eye injury can make all the difference in ensuring you receive the appropriate amount of damages.

Attorney Ben Crittenden understands how your life has changed because of the negligence of another. He will gather evidence to strengthen your case and make sure you get a fair settlement so that you can get on with your life. Call Ben in his Anchorage office today or take a moment to fill out the contact form on this page to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.