A car accident can be devastating when just one person is involved. When a child is present, or a mother is pregnant, the risks skyrocket. What’s more, even a minor car accident may lead to significant risks to the unborn child. If you have been in a car accident while you are pregnant, your first step is to get medical care even if you feel okay. Document the incident with the police as well. Then, work closely with your car accident attorney in West Virginia to recover your losses.
By some statistics, motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of fetal mortality and serious injury of the mother.
Know the Risks to Your Child
Injury to an unborn child is not uncommon after a car accident. A study conducted in Canada found that women in their second trimester are at a 42% increased risk of complications when involved in a car accident compared to three years prior to the pregnancy. In short, women involved in an accident are at a high risk of complications because of the motion, force, and conditions of the accident.
But, what can happen to a woman in this situation? The risks can be significant but depend on the circumstances of the accident. Here are some examples:
- Miscarriage risks are higher. The impact of the accident or complications from the accident can cause the women to miscarry the child.
- Premature birth is more likely. Children born prematurely often suffer from numerous complications including life-threatening ailments and limited lung development.
- Birth defects are possible. Impact directly to the fetus can create internal injuries for the mother and the child. Some children do not develop any disabilities. Others struggle with lack of development.
- Placental abruption can occur. In this situation, the child is at risk of needing constant monitoring to ensure the placenta does not completely separate from the body, creating a high risk of miscarriage.
- Failure to thrive can occur. In this situation, mental and physical limitations after the accident can limit the child’s ability to grow and develop at a normal rate.
In many of these instances, doctors will label the child a high-risk pregnancy. Unfortunately, even with today’s technology, they cannot always know the full extent of the injuries or risks. For this reason, many women end up on bed rest, unable to work, hospitalized, or otherwise limited in their day-to-day lives as they wait for the birth to occur.
Complications can occur before, during, or after the child’s birth. Doctors will need to take extensive steps to ensure the mother and child remain protected for the months to come.
Emotional Stress Is a Factor
Some women experience a significant amount of emotional duress and stress during this time. There are risks to the child as a result of these high levels of stress hormones in the body. This in itself can create a worrisome situation for the mother and the child.
What to Do Now If You’ve Been in an Accident
If you were in an accident while you are pregnant, seek out medical care. Even if you do not have symptoms, seek out care from the local emergency room. Then, over the coming weeks, monitor for any changes in the pregnancy including vaginal bleeding, fluid leaking, pain, dizziness, and any swelling.
Getting Help for Your Losses
In some situations, individuals will experience loss. In West Virginia, you have the legal right to pursue financial compensation for the losses you have incurred. If the other driver was at fault of the accident, this will mean filing a claim with their insurance policy.
However, in some cases, your own insurance company can provide financial support in this situation. If you carry medical coverage, you may want to seek out financial health from your agent.
Take these steps with the help of a personal injury attorney. The financial losses and compensation owed to you can range widely but can include:
- Compensation for the loss of life
- Compensation for the loss of quality of life
- Medical bills
- Lost time at work
- Long-term recovery needs
- Medical equipment needed
- Pain and suffering
It is difficult to realize all of these losses immediately. Most often, a high-risk pregnancy will mean increased financial costs to you. And, there may be extenuating circumstances when your child is born. You may be owed compensation for such losses.
Our West Virginia Car Accident Attorney Is Here to Work with You
With years of experience, our aggressive legal team is ready to work closely with you to get any compensation owed to you. Because of the risks of pregnancy, it is always necessary to work with a skilled personal injury attorney in these cases. Let our team help you. Call us at 877-416-5457 or use our online form right now to request a free consultation.