Victims of Kentucky rear end collisions may experience back pain, neck pain or whiplash despite using seat belts and head rests. You may be wondering, what is whiplash? Typically, whiplash is a term for pain and stiffness in the neck and back area. It may also indicate a more severe injury such as a herniated disc.
Reduce back pain after Kentucky accident
Get Examined for Back Pain Issues
When is Back Surgery Appropriate?
Different Types of Back Surgery
Bulging Discs after Auto Accident in KY
Spondylolysis and Accidents
Back Pain after KY Accident – Call an Attorney
How can you reduce back pain after a Kentucky accident?
Studies show that 85% of patients with whiplash after a rear end automobile accident complain of lower back pain. Unfortunately, you don’t always feel back pain, neck pain and whiplash right away. Sometimes it takes a few days or even weeks. You usually can’t see these injuries, either. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce back pain. Some non-medical ways include:
- Improve posture
- Reduce stress
- Stretch, strengthen and move the muscles
- Improve sleep
Get Examined for Back Pain Issues
If you are experiencing neck or back pain, you should always be examined by your doctor or chiropractor. Do this as soon as you can. When you get checked out by a doctor, you will know what is wrong and will get the treatment you need to recover. If you don’t see a doctor or wait until you start to feel pain, which could be days or weeks later, this could hurt your case. How does this hurt your case? If a jury discovers a gap between the accident and doctor’s appointment, they will think that your injuries were not caused by this accident. They will think that if you were really hurt, you would have seen a doctor right away. This conclusion could be bad news for your case.
When is back surgery appropriate?
Some back injuries cannot be cured with conservative non-surgical treatments, especially when they fail to relieve your back pain and other symptoms. When this happens, it is proper to consider surgery. Here are some factors to help you decide if it’s time for back surgery:
- The source of your back pain is from a herniated disk, spinal stenosis or sciatica, which does not respond to physical therapy or other form of medication.
- When your back pain is accompanied with fever, worsening pain and numbness in the injured area.
- Teen victims are recommended to undergo back surgery to correct a spinal deformity.
- Your bones are broken or your spinal column is damaged, that leaves your spine unstable.
- You are suffering from a condition that compresses your spinal nerves, thus resulting to the numbness or pain along the back of your leg.
If you feel consistent back pain, see a doctor. They will help diagnose you and figure out what your options are to relieve your pain. It’s also a good idea to get a second doctor’s opinion if your first doctor recommended surgery, just to make sure it’s necessary.
The different types of back surgery
There are several different forms of back surgery that are available. You should be aware of the different options so you can be informed when discussing this with your doctor. Some of the different procedures include:
- Diskectomy: In this surgery, a portion of a disk is removed. This relieves some of the pressure on a nerve. It’s an open surgery, so the surgeon will cut through skin and tissue to get to the area. This surgery may involve removing part of a vertebra to access the ruptured disk.
- Laminectomy: In a laminectomy, the lamina, which is the bony arch part of each vertebra, is removed. This surgery will enlarge the spinal canal to relieve pressure caused by spinal stenosis.
- Fusion: This is when two or more bones in your spine are permanently connected. The fusion will add stability to a spinal fracture, or when there is a lot of movement between vertebra. This will reduce the pain.
- Intradiscal Electrothermal Therapy: This is also referred to as IDET. This treatment is when the doctor will insert a needle through a catheter directly into a disk. The needle is heated to a high temperature for as long as 20 minutes. The result is the heat will thicken and also seal the disk wall, which will reduce the disk bulge and the nerve irritation.
- Vertebroplasty: This procedure is for fractured or compressed vertebrae to help stabilize fractures and relieve pain. The doctor will inject bone cement into the compressed vertebrae. This surgery is used with another procedure where a balloon type instrument is inserted to expand the compressed vertebrae before the cement is injected.
- Artificial Discs: Artificial discs are implanted as an alternative to spinal fusion for relief from pain caused by degenerated or injured discs.
- Plasma Disc Decompression: This option is for people who have suffered a back injury in an accident and have not responded to conservative care. Individuals suffering from a bulging or herniated disc may be a good candidate for this procedure. In many cases, Plasma Disc Decompression could provide an alternative to a more invasive back surgery, such as a disc fusion. It is described as a minimally invasive procedure that allows you to go home on the same day of the procedure.
Bulging Disks after Auto Accident
Bulging disks usually occur in the lower part of the back. The condition involves a disk that bulges through an opening in the spine. Occasionally, bulging disks can affect the neck. Disks serve as a cushion for the vertebrae of the spine and are made of a soft gel-like material. Sometimes a bulging disk is from aging, but they can also be caused by an accident. The disk can shift out of its normal spot and can cause pain.
Bulging disks versus Herniated disks
Bulging disks usually develop over time, while a herniated disk is the result of an injury to the spine. There is usually no pain associated with a bulging disk unless it becomes herniated, comes in contact with a nerve root or ruptures. Since a bulging disk doesn’t usually cause pain, it often goes unnoticed and untreated. If you feel radiating pain from your neck to your shoulders and down through your arms, that may be a sign that a nerve in the neck is pinched. If you feel radiating pain through your legs, that may indicate a nerve in your lower back is pinched. However, it can usually be detected through routine magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) tests.
How do you treat a bulging disk?
The good news is that the treatment of a bulging disk is generally conservative. The treatment may involve rest and lifting restrictions, ice or heat therapy and anti-inflammatory medication. If pain is involved, medication may be prescribed depending on the severity of your pain. Occasionally back surgery may be needed to relieve severe pain.
Spondylolysis and Accidents
What is Spondylolysis?
Spondylolysis is a defect in the connection between vertebrae or the bones that make up the spinal column. The defect can lead to small stress fractures and weaken the bones that slip out of place. Many people with spondylolysis do not feel any symptoms and don’t even know that they have this problem. The most common symptom is having pain in the lower part of your back. The pain usually spreads across the lower back and feels like a muscle strain. The pain worsens with vigorous exercise.
What causes Spondylolysis?
There is a theory that stated genetics is a factor in spondylolysis. The theory indicates that some people are born with thin vertebrae. Thus, they are at higher risk for fractures. Another theory suggests that trauma to the lower back can weaken the area. Some examples of trauma include an accident (like a car, truck, or motorcycle), falling, or lifting heavy objects. This could make the lower back more vulnerable to impact and increase your chances of spondylolysis.
Some people in Kentucky are bothered with back pain after an accident. They feel the injury or pain in their lower back after the collision. Findings say that this kind of defect is normally genetic because it occurs from the inside. However, an automobile accident that injures the area where spondylolysis is occurring can cause it to become worse. Doctors often state that the condition was dormant and brought into disabling reality by the accident.
Back Pain After an Accident in Kentucky? Call us
If another driver rear-ended you, call a Kentucky personal injury attorney to determine your rights. Driver’s liability is fairly direct in rear-end car collision cases. However, back pain, neck pain, and whiplash cases can be some of the most difficult to settle for a fair value. The fact that the injury is irreversible and subjective in nature allows the insurance company to fight it. Don’t ignore the pain! By going to the doctor immediately, you will give your Kentucky car accident attorney a fighting chance to obtain a fair settlement for you in your case.