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Unfortunately, neck and back injuries are common during car accidents; the impact strains the ligaments and muscles in the back, and the facet joints bear the brunt of the force. This can result in several injuries, including whiplash, disc herniation, compression fractures, and spondylolisthesis.
Millions of people are injured or seriously injured in car accidents around the US each year. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, in 2016 4.6 million individuals were seriously injured. The severity of impact-related injuries can vary depending on the type of accident, but even minor auto accidents can cause traumatic injuries – injuries of sudden onset that require immediate medical attention.
More than one part of your body can be injured – and new symptoms can arise in the days after an accident. Back and neck injuries are some of the most commonly experienced injuries from car wrecks. Common Back and Neck Injuries After a Wreck:
Neck and back injuries from car wrecks are varied and can result from impact at slow speeds as well as fast. We have highlighted some of the most common issues below. Symptoms associated with back and neck injuries result from orthopedic damage such as bone fractures or damage to the muscles, ligaments, and tendons that support the skeletal system.
When the head experiences sudden movement – front, back or side to side – damage to muscles, ligaments and connective tissues in the neck and upper back can lead to whiplash. Whiplash often presents following rear-end vehicle collisions.
The force of an accident can lead to broken bones with extremities, facial and collarbone fractures being the most common.
An auto collision can lead to parts of your spinal structure shifting out of place. Slipped, ruptured, herniated and bulging discs can lead to debilitating pain.
Damage to spinal joints, discs, vertebrae and supporting structures like soft tissues can cause musculoskeletal injuries such as mechanical back pain.
By far, the most common injury resulting from motor vehicle accidents is whiplash (80% of car crash injuries). Whiplash is a cervical (neck) injury that is caused when the head is thrown either backward by acceleration or forward by deceleration. The acceleration or deceleration in car accidents is typically abrupt, which will cause the head to jerk and be stretched beyond its normal range of motion, straining the muscles and ligaments of the neck. Extreme causes of whiplash can even cause fractures to the neck vertebrae. Although a full recovery is likely, these injuries are incredibly painful and may necessitate prolonged time off of work and activity in order to recover.
WMost commonly, whiplash is the result of a rear-end automobile collision, rather than a side impact or head-on collision, although that is possible. In the event of a car accident, kinetic energy will keep the bodies in the car moving forward. Due to restraints such as seat belts, the body will be stopped while the head will continue to be thrown backward. This unnatural movement of the neck commonly results in hypertension injuries. Depending on the severity of the impact and how fast both vehicles were traveling, the extent of the whiplash will differ.
The most serious whiplash injuries will cause traumatic brain injuries. Those who are injured by whiplash will likely be examined by a doctor in both a physical examination and an X-ray or CT scan. In severe cases, doctors might examine and monitor brain function in order to ascertain whether or not there was damage. With acceleration / deceleration injuries, the brain may swell and cause bruising and bleeding. This can be potentially life-threatening.
Cervical acceleration / deceleration injuries most commonly result in trauma to the deep anterior neck muscles. When a muscle is “strained,” it is slightly torn. When a ligament is “sprained,” it is stretched or torn. This can be incredibly painful, as the ligaments in the neck are responsible for maintaining a comfortable curve of the neck. Most neck injuries of this nature will simply involve micro-tears, but more serious hypertension will result in larger tears and even fractures. Many car accident victims, even after healing, will experience what is known as “myospasm.” This symptom involves the sudden contraction of the neck muscles. These spasms can often be painful.
HURT611 can connect you with the best spinal injury doctors and attorneys in your state and get you the representation you need to protect your rights, recover lost wages and compensate you for your injuries. HURT611 can also get you to the medical care that you need to fully recover and properly document your injuries. We only connect you to attorneys who do not charge a fee unless they settle your case and we only connect you to doctors who will work with your insurance company and your attorney so you have no out of pocket medical cots. Our service is 100% FREE. No Fee. No Cost. No Obligation.
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