Imagine a scenario wherein you are driving at moderate speed with your family down the road. The other car suddenly crashed into the rear of your vehicle. You feel like you have no control over what is happening behind you on the road. This precarious situation makes you feel anxious about the safety and well-being of your family.
A rear-end collision is the most common car accident. It accounts for about 29% of all accidents nationwide. Most victims in rear-end collisions suffer hyperextension of the neck, facet joint impingement, and muscle strain, among others. In more severe cases, victims suffer spinal and brain injuries, both of which have lifetime debilitating effects.
Signs of Back and Neck Injuries
Whiplash is the common cause of back and neck injuries in rear-end collisions. Here, the body violently jerks forward and backward, almost like a whipping motion. Nevertheless, even at a low speed of 20 miles per hour, the effects of a rear-end collision on the body can be traumatic if left untreated.
The symptoms of back and neck injuries sustained in rear-end collisions may manifest only after a few days or weeks. This is because in stressful events, the body pumps adrenaline into the bloodstream and gives high tolerance to pain. The adrenaline rush experienced in the aftermath of the accident mask the pain. So, the car occupants move on with their daily routine, thinking everything is okay. More often, bruises and swelling only appear after a day or two. Still, whether these symptoms appear instantaneously or not, it is prudent to seek medical help for peace of mind.
Watch out for the following delayed symptoms of back and neck injuries, and talk to your physician at the first instance:
- Excruciating headache for several days after a car crash
- Spine-tingling sensation and numbness in the arms, hands, or fingers
- Body pain like swelling, tenderness, or bruising
- Pinching sensation in the back, neck, or shoulders
- Difficulty in lifting light objects
- Depression or anxiety
Types of Back and Neck Injuries in Rear-End Collisions
Know the types of back and neck injuries and how to treat them effectively.
A vertebral disc is a fluid-filled structure in the vertebrae. Its role is to act as a cushion and protect the spine from injury. When a rear-end collision occurs, the impact of whiplash or jerking motion places too much pressure on the vertebral disc and causes misalignment resulting in a bulge or rupture. Commonly known as slipped disc, it leaves debilitating effects if left undiagnosed and untreated.
Spinal stenosis is an injury that narrows the channel that houses the spinal cord in the vertebrae. Extreme pressure forces the vertebrae outwards and pinches the nerves inside a channel.
It affects the neck and the lower back or lumbar region. The afflicted person feels lower back pain or stiffness, sore hips, and a tingling sensation from legs to toes. In severe cases, there is a loss of bowel control or bladder.
Thoracic Spine Injuries
The thoracic spine runs from the middle back to the upper back, just above the lumbar region (lower back). The pain brought about by fractures and herniated discs in this region can be excruciating. The injuries sustained may even cause paralysis in the worst cases.
Facet Joint Injuries
Facet joints connect each vertebra in the spine, making it possible for the back to bend, twist, and swivel. They have tissues (cartilage) and fluid around them to keep them from crushing against each other. In a rear-end collision, neck injuries occur because the jerking motion forces the facet joints to collide. Thus, the impact may damage the facet joint itself. It may lead to a degenerative spinal disorder called facet joint syndrome.
Lower back pain is a common symptom of a lumbar sprain. The violent motion of a rear-end collision causes damage to the muscles and tissues in the lower back.
Lumbar Spine Injuries
A lumbar spine injury is painful and requires expert medical care. These are fractures in the spinal cord that require surgery.
Types of Treatment for Car Accident Injuries
Here are some treatments associated with car accident collision injuries:
Physical therapy treatments differ as each case is unique. Generally, there are hand stretching and strengthening exercises in the treatment. Physical therapy alleviates different types of pain, including:
- Muscle pain and muscle strain (soft tissue injuries)
- Neck and shoulders pain
- Ligament pain
- Foot injuries
A spinal misalignment may occur as a result of rear-end collision. Chiropractors utilize a technique known as spinal manipulation to realign vertebrae and prevent them from putting strain on the spinal nerves.
Pain specialists treat the pain and discomfort from whiplash by administering cervical steroids. There are over-the-counter pain medications, but it is best to consult a medical professional, especially if the patient has comorbidity.
Back Pain Treatment
There are various injections to treat chronic pain arising from car accident injuries. They target the pain-causing nerves and are more effective than taking oral tablets.
Get a Free Consultation From The Best Injury Lawyers in Michigan
The Clark Law Office understands the stress and anxiety caused by rear-end collisions. If you need professional assistance in getting compensation for your injuries, loss of earnings, physical and mental suffering and more, we are here to help you. Our high winning rate and experience speak for us. We won’t charge a penny until you win your injury case. Call us at (517)-347-6900 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll get back to you soon.