The high forces and traumatizing impact in a car accident can cause ligament injuries (soft tissue injuries), wherein the ligaments can get stretched and torn. Ligament injuries can result in long-lasting pain, bruising, swelling, discomfort, reduced range of motion, and loss of physical function.
Common Symptoms of Ligament Injury
Inflammation, tightness, and sharp pain are common symptoms of a torn ligament. The symptoms of some ligament injuries do not occur immediately after a car accident and that is why many adults don’t realize how seriously they have been injured. The swelling and pain may surface much later. If ignored, it can lead to the creation of scar tissue. Scar tissue further reduces mobility.
The underlying soft tissue injuries like ligaments are difficult to diagnose since they are not visible on X-rays. Doctors may have to perform physical manipulation testing or order an MRI to determine the extent of ligament injury.
Treatment for Ligament Injury
The treatment plan depends on the extent of your ligament injury. Sometimes, you may need only ice and pain relievers to heal minor tears. While some ligament injuries can be treated through pain management and physical therapy, others may require orthopedic surgery to repair the torn ligament.
For initial treatment at home, you can follow the “R.I.C.E.” method:
- Resting the particular area that is in pain
- Using Ice packs several times a day.
- Wearing an elastic Compression bandage to prevent additional swelling and blood loss
- Elevating the injury higher than your heart while resting to reduce swelling
The healing time depends upon the type of ligament tear and the treatment plan ordered by the doctor. If you have been experiencing pain after a car accident, visit us at Central Healthcare Center immediately to perform a proper assessment of your condition and seek medical care.