October 21st, 2019| There are two types of shock that can occur after accidents and physical injuries—physical shock and psychological shock. Whether they’re high speed, head-on collisions or relatively minor fender-benders, car accidents have the potential to cause both types of shock. People who suffer from either type of post-accident shock often need multi-faceted treatments to help them recover. In addition, it’s not uncommon for victims of car accidents to suffer from either or both types of shock, especially after crashes that weren’t their fault. At Berg Injury Lawyers, our California auto accident attorneys take into consideration victims’ physical and mental health after crashes caused by others’ negligence. Then, we do everything in our power to help them get maximum compensation for their accident-related expenses, including medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If you were hurt in a crash that was caused by a negligent driver, we want to speak with you. Contact us today for a free consultation. We’re ready to put our experience to work for you.
Types of Physical ShockPhysical shock can become apparent in the minutes, hours, or days after an auto accident. Victims often experience serious symptoms that can impair their quality of life and even become life-threatening. Types of physical shock that can occur after auto accidents include:
- Hypovolemic shock—This type of shock occurs when victims suffer significant blood loss resulting in a rapid and severe reduction in blood pressure. The reduced blood volume and blood pressure make it difficult for the heart to pump blood throughout the body, including to vital organs. Hypovolemia can be caused by external and internal bleeding, as well as burns.
- Neurogenic shock—This type of shock occurs when victims experience spinal cord injuries. When the spine is damaged, it can affect the sympathetic nervous system, which controls essential functions like the heartbeat and breathing. Victims who experience neurogenic shock may suffer from rapid losses of blood pressure and reduced oxygenation.
- Cardiogenic shock—This type of shock occurs when victims experience damage to their hearts. Although it’s commonly associated with heart attacks, it can also occur during accidents and injuries, especially in people with weakened hearts or who are at risk of cardiac events. Victims who experience cardiogenic shock have reduced blood flow throughout their bodies.
- Septic shock—Although rare, this type of shock can occur when victims’ wounds become infected after a serious, injury-causing accident. Victims who experience septic shock may be at risk of severe complications, and they require treatment via antibiotics and fluids.
- Irregular heartbeat and rapid pulse
- Rapid and shallow breathing
- Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
- Confusion and anxiety
- Nausea and vomiting
Types of Psychological ShockPsychological shock often overlaps with and may be classified as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD can result in symptoms that may persist for weeks, months, years, or decades. Some patients may even struggle with PTSD for the rest of their lives. Common symptoms of PTSD after auto accidents include:
- Intrusive thoughts and worries about the accident and future accidents
- Irritability and anger
- Fear of driving or riding in a vehicle
- Depression and anxiety