Although victims may sustain an injury to almost any part of the body during an auto accident, those relating to the spine are often the most severe. They also happen to be some of the most commonly experienced injuries in serious crashes. Learn more about the types of spinal injuries that may occur in car crashes, discover what compensation may be owed to you, and gain information on the ways that an experienced attorney can increase your chances of making a full and fair recovery.
Of all the spinal injuries that may occur during a car accident, whiplash is the one most frequently experienced. Most people consider it an injury to the neck, which is mostly true, but it can also affect the spine. Victims also sometimes experience multiple spinal injuries, which can compound the complications that they experience from their whiplash injuries. Some whiplash victims also sustain what is known as chronic whiplash. A phenomenon that is still highly misunderstood, it can cause a lifetime of pain and emotional distress for the injured party.
Herniated and Ruptured Disc Injuries
The spine is composed of several vertebrae – bony casings that house and protect the spinal column. Jelly-filled discs between the vertebrae keep them from rubbing together. Unfortunately, an auto accident can cause the discs to shift, tear, or even rupture. Should that happen, the victim may experience either a ruptured or herniated disc. Symptoms typically include numbness and radiating pain throughout specific areas of the body (usually the limbs). Conservative care may correct the problem (i.e. rest, chiropractic care, etc.), but surgery may be required in more serious cases.
Spinal Fractures and Spondylolisthesis
During a car accident, the body may be swiftly jerked in one direction, and then another. All that pressure can cause a compression fracture of the spine. Should this occur, the victim may experience a spinal fracture, spondylolisthesis (a condition in which a vertebra is fractured and then shifts or places pressure on the spinal column), or both. Symptoms can range from pain and numbness in certain areas of the body to problems with bladder control. Treatment may include surgery, physical therapy, and a lot of rest (and perhaps even immobilization of the spine).
Spinal Cord Injuries
Injuries to the spinal cord tend to be the most devastating of all spinal injuries. Part of this is because, although the spine itself can be repaired, science has yet to find a way to repair the bundle of nerves that it protects. Instead, victims are left to hope that their injury will be less severe, once the inflammation goes down—or they may be left to bet on experimental treatments and clinical trials. In either case, victims who experience an injury to their spinal cord tend to need a great deal of support, treatment, and assistance.
Facet Joint Injuries
Joints allow the body to bend, twist, and move. Facet joints, which can be found in the spine, act like a hinge between each vertebra. Sadly, these self-lubricating joints are often injured in auto accidents. Victims may require physical therapy, facet injections, chiropractic care, dry needling and ablation procedures. Compensation may be owed for any medical expenses incurred or any time missed at work. Some victims may also be entitled to damages for pain and suffering.
Spinal stenosis is not actually caused by a car accident, but an accident can cause an asymptomatic case of spinal stenosis to become symptomatic. In other words, the accident may bring on pain, numbness, and other complications from an already deteriorating spine. Victims who have experienced such an injury may be owed compensation, depending on the circumstances. Talk to an experienced personal injury attorney to learn more.
Contact Our Appleton Spinal Injury Lawyers
If you or someone you love has experienced a spinal injury because of another person’s negligence, contact Herrling Clark Law Firm, Ltd. for assistance. Dedicated and experienced, our Appleton spinal injury lawyers will fight for the most compensation possible. We protect your rights and interests at every turn, and we offer free and personalized consultations. Call 920-739-7366 today to schedule yours today.