What Types of Doctors Treat Car Accident Injuries?
How to find the right doctor and afford medical care after a Houston, TX crash
After a car accident, people may initially experience shock and adrenaline, which can mask the pain that follows. As things settle, the pain sets in. During this confusing and agonizing time, many injured crash victims know they need to see a doctor, but which one?
Crash victims have many options for traumatic injury treatment in the Greater Houston Area. An experienced Houston car accident lawyer can connect injured victims with physicians who specialize in treating traumatic injuries. And if you don’t have health insurance or are otherwise unable to avoid treatment, an attorney may be able to help.
Even if you don’t think your injuries are severe, getting medical attention right away is critical. That means you need to understand the types of doctors available to put yourself in the best position to quickly access the right medical care for themselves after an accident.
Where to find doctors after a crash in Houston
It is always wise to see a doctor as soon as possible after a crash, even if you feel okay. Some injuries, such as hairline fractures, dislocation, whiplash, and even internal bleeding, may not show immediate signs. In addition to protecting your health, getting medical attention protects your future legal claim by documenting your injuries.
So, where should you go first? In general, crash victims have three places to start the treatment process:
- Emergency trauma care. For those with life-threatening injuries, seeking immediate medical assistance is essential. Houston has over a dozen hospitals with emergency rooms and urgent care centers, including Houston Methodist, St. Joseph, Life Savers ER, and Red Duke.
- Urgent care clinics. For injuries that need prompt attention but are not life-threatening, an urgent care clinic can provide an initial assessment and a referral for more specialized treatment. Again, don’t go to urgent care if you have a true medical emergency. It may be a faster and more convenient option if your injuries are less severe.
- Primary care provider (PCP). If your primary care provider has walk-in hours or same-day appointments, seeing them is generally preferable to going to urgent care. (Again, if your injuries are a medical emergency, go to the emergency room.) Your PCP knows your health and medical history, so they can more easily diagnose what’s wrong. That said, if your PCP doesn’t have immediate availability, your top priority is to be seen as soon as possible. If you go to urgent care or the emergency room, schedule a follow-up appointment with your PCP as soon as possible.
Once you have had an initial medical evaluation, you may be referred to a specialist for further evaluation, diagnosis, or treatment. It’s important to follow your doctor’s instructions, go to your follow-up appointments, and put your health first.
Types of doctors to see after an accident
Depending on the nature and extent of your car accident injuries, there are a wide variety of doctors and other medical professionals who can provide specialized care. Types of doctors a crash victim might see for medical treatment after a car accident include:
- Emergency room physicians. Emergency medicine specialists handle immediate, life-threatening injuries.
- Trauma surgeons. These surgeons specialize in performing immediate surgeries on people with critical injuries.
- Personal injury specialists. These doctors specialize in treating car accident injuries and formulating care plans.
- Pain management doctors. Pain specialists deal with various pain issues, from migraines to chronic back pain. They can recommend medication and therapies to help manage your pain.
- Radiologists. These doctors are trained to read and interpret imaging studies like X-rays and MRIs. Many car accident victims need to see a radiologist to help diagnose their injuries.
- Orthopedic surgeons. These surgeons repair broken bones and fractures.
- Neurologists. If you have a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or nerve damage, a neurologist can help to diagnose and treat it.
- Burn specialists. If your car accident caused burn injuries, you need specialized care.
- Plastic surgeons. Plastic surgeons are experts in reconstructive surgery to restore form and function.
- General surgeons. Internal injuries in the upper body may require surgical repair.
- Physical therapists, massage therapists, and chiropractors. These specialists can help you regain mobility and manage pain.
How an attorney can help you find the right treatment
Finding the right doctor to treat your injuries after a serious car accident is not always an easy process. Our attorneys have extensive experience working with injured people in the Houston area throughout their treatment process. We can help you navigate your medical treatment and advocate for your rights throughout the process.
If you don’t have health insurance to pay for your treatment, your attorney may also be able to issue a “Letter of Protection” (LOP) to get your medical bills paid while your case unfolds. An LOP is an agreement between you/your attorney and your medical provider to provide treatment on a “treat now, pay later” basis. Essentially, your doctor agrees to refrain from billing for their services until your case is resolved; that is, you receive a verdict or settlement in your car accident claim
Talk to an experienced attorney about your car accident claim
If you've been injured in a car accident, Smith & Hassler, Attorneys at Law is here to assist you. Our experienced team of Houston-based car accident attorneys provides experienced guidance throughout your recovery while ensuring your legal rights are protected. We offer free case evaluations and work on a contingency basis, so you pay nothing unless we win your case. Don't navigate the post-accident challenges alone – contact Smith & Hassler today to secure the compensation you're entitled to and start your journey to recovery.
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