Soft tissue injuries aren’t uncommon, especially if you’ve been involved in an accident.
These injuries most frequently involve damage to the tendons, ligaments, and/or muscle in the body. While many soft tissue injuries will heal over time, others can linger, cause long-lasting pain, and interfere with your life. The most serious injuries can result in limited mobility for the affected muscles.
What are the Different Types of Soft Tissue Injuries?
Soft tissue injuries are typically classified as either “acute” or “chronic.” This basically refers to the type of trauma that caused the accident.
Acute soft tissue injuries occur when the body is involved in a sudden and unexpected traumatic accident. One single traumatic blow or incident could cause an acute soft tissue injury. For example, you may suffer an acute soft tissue injury if you are involved in a fall, car accident, or sports accident.
Chronic soft tissue injuries occur when the body is subjected to continued trauma or overuse over an extended period of time. One single incident isn’t enough to cause a chronic injury. For example, you may sustain a chronic soft tissue injury if you use a repetitive motion every day at work. The body doesn’t have time to heal itself between each work day, which puts a strain on the overused area.
What are the Most Common Soft Tissue Injuries?
There are many different kinds of soft tissue injuries. It’s important to know what a soft tissue injury is and how it’s likely to occur. The following are the most common types:
Bruising is an acute injury that occurs when tiny blood vessels under the skin burst after the body is subjected to sudden external trauma. The classic sign of bruising is discoloration of the skin. This is actually a pooling of blood in the damaged area. Other signs of bruising can include swelling, tenderness, and limited mobility.
Tendinitis is a chronic injury that involves the inflammation of tendons that connect soft tissue and bones in the joints. This type of injury tends to affect the legs, arms, and shoulders most. Signs of tendinitis include swelling, limited mobility, and pain that becomes worse with activity.
Bursitis is a chronic injury that occurs when small, fluid-filled sacs in your joints burst. These sacs, called bursae, are located between your soft tissue and bones. They act as a cushion and prevent friction in the body when you move. The bursae can become inflamed when you overuse a particular area of the body. This can cause the sacs to rupture and cause extreme pain, especially in the hips, knees, shoulders, and elbows.
Symptoms of bursitis include swelling, limited mobility, and pain.
A sprain is one of the most frequently reported soft tissue injuries. Sprains, which are an acute injury, occur when ligaments in the body tear or stretch. This typically happens when a joint is suddenly and unexpectedly twisted or rotated, often as the result of an accident. The knees, ankles, wrists, and elbows are most vulnerable to sprains.
Symptoms of a sprain include tenderness, pain, bruising, swelling, and a limited range of motion.
Strains, which can be the result of acute or chronic trauma, occur when tendons or muscle in the body are torn or stretched. This can happen when the body is subjected to sudden trauma or if you put a great deal of stress on a particular area of the body over an extended period of time.
Symptoms of a strain include weakness, pain, cramping, swelling, and muscle tightness.
What Causes a Soft Tissue Injury?
Soft tissue injuries are common injuries after an accident, especially when another person is negligent. Some of the most commonly reported causes of soft tissue injuries include:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle collisions
- Pedestrian accidents
- Slips and falls
- Recreational vehicle accidents
- Recreational activities
- Boat accidents
- Nursing home abuse
- Construction accidents, and
- Workplace accidents.
Any accident that results in physical harm can cause a soft tissue injury.
What Compensation is Available to Soft Tissue Injury Victims?
When someone else’s negligence causes you injury, you have the right to pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit. Injury victims can typically recover economic and non-economic damages for their losses.
Economic damages are available if you have suffered any financial expenses or losses because of your soft tissue injury. Awarding economic damages helps to mitigate the financial pressure you experience because of the injury-causing accident.
Examples of economic damages include those for:
- Lost wages
- Property damage
- Medical expenses
- Rehabilitation costs
- Nursing care, and more.
In Florida, you can only recover economic damages to the extent of your losses. In other words, you can’t recover more than you’ve lost or will expect to lose. These damages are only intended to help you get back in the financial position you were in before your injury.
Some consequences of a soft tissue injury won’t have immediate or specific financial costs. Non-economic damages are awarded to compensate you for these intimate and hard-to-value injuries.
Examples of non-economic damages include those for:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life, and more.
Non-economic damages tend to be available in serious injury cases. These damages can make up a substantial portion of your claim.
Can I Recover Compensation If I Contributed to the Accident?
Yes, you can recover compensation so long as you’re not completely at fault for your injuries. Florida’s comparative fault laws allow you to pursue damages even if you are 99% responsible for your injuries. However, these rules reduce your damages to account for your share of blame. For example, if you have $100,000 in damages after a slip and fall but are found to be 30% at fault, you can only recover $70,000 (70%).
It is typical for multiple people to contribute to an accident. Fortunately, Florida law won’t prohibit you from recover compensation even if you are partially at fault for your accident.
How Long Do I Have to File a Soft Tissue Injury Claim?
You don’t have an unlimited amount of time to file a personal injury lawsuit after an accident. Under Florida’s statute of limitations., you typically have four years to file your claim. However, there are certain instances when you’ll have more or less time to take action.
You shouldn’t delay your case. The quicker you get started, the easier it will be for your attorney to gather evidence, locate witnesses, and investigate other components of your case.
Contact our Miami Personal Injury Lawyers
Have you suffered a soft tissue injury in a Miami accident? You may want to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation. Contact Lavent Law, P.A. to find out how our Miami personal injury lawyers can help you fight for the money you deserve. We offer a free consultation, so do not hesitate to call for help today.