Whiplash injury has far reaching consequences for teen

Published: 23/03/2015

Whiplash often comes in for hostile comments from the media, being seen as a trivial injury which people make a claim on, solely for financial benefit. Personal injury solicitor, Kevin Smith discusses a medical case where whiplash was anything but a trivial injury.

“A headline on a national newspaper website caught my eye recently – Teenager left unable to read or write after suffering whiplash in car crash. The teenager in question was aged 19 when injured in a road traffic accident. Initially the teen thought that they’d escaped without serious injury but he was diagnosed with whiplash. Then, shortly after the car accident he started to experience serious problems.

“To begin with he found that any words on the TV appeared like ‘alien symbols’ to him. His situation deteriorated and within two months he was completely illiterate. A brain scan showed that he had an 8mm cyst on a part of the brain that is linked to memory recall. The accident had caused the cyst to grow and because of this he’d lost the ability to read and write. Over the next five years the university undergraduate was re-taught to read and write and finally was able to return to university and obtain a first class degree.

“This case illustrates very well how whiplash, although seen by many as a trivial injury can in some circumstances have far reaching consequences. The teen was a passenger and injured in a car accident when the driver was forced off the road and the car skidded out of control onto the grass verge and although feeling dazed and shocked and hitting his head he did not lose consciousness at the time of the accident.

“Whilst this case is unique it does show the importance of having any injuries sustained in a car accident properly checked out. It shows that the injury could affect the victim’s health fundamentally and that could include ability to work and draw an income. Some accident victims find the course of their lives forever changed. A compensation claim for such victims is not just about money, it’s about securing necessary rehabilitation - this case also demonstrates how fundamental rehabilitation can be in enabling a return to normal life.”

To find out more about making a claim for a road traffic accident that wasn’t your fault click here

Content correct at time of publication

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