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Herniated Disc from Car Accident
Why is it so difficult to obtain compensation for a herniated disc?
When a car is involved in an accident, the weight of the car and the kinetic energy moving the car are converted into the force of the crash. If two sedans are traveling at highway speeds, the force impact on the vehicle will be about 80,000 pounds. Imagine what that force can do to your body.
Fortunately, modern vehicles have safety features like crumple zones that direct most of the force of the crash away from the occupant. But, it is common for car accident victims to experience forces far greater than 3G (the force an astronaut experiences when leaving Earth’s atmosphere). These forces can cause the vertebrae of the spine to twist and turn far from their natural position.
What is a Herniated Disc?
As the spine twists, the fluid-filled cushions between the vertebrae are pushed out of place and into the spinal canal. This puts pressure on the spinal cord – the bundle of nerves that carries messages between the body and the brain. This pressure can result in back pain, leg pain, muscle weakness, tingling, numbness, “pins and needles”, or a sensation that feels like small electric shocks.
Symptoms of a Herniated Disc
The symptoms of a herniated disc will depend on whether the disc is pressing on a nerve. If the nerve is not involved, the symptoms will be mild. If the disc presses on a nerve, the symptoms will be more severe and may include:
- Lower back pain
- Pain and numbness in the shoulders, arms and chest
- Sciatica or pain that travels from the spine and down the to the ankle or foot
- Pain that intensifies when sitting, standing, bending, or twisting
- Tingling or numbness in one leg
- Weakness in one or both legs
- Pain in the front of the thigh
- Deep muscle pain
- Muscle spasms
- Pain that is relieved by walking or lying down
The Challenge of Diagnosing a Herniated Disc
Herniated discs are rarely diagnosed in the emergency room. A car accident victim generally feels sore all over after the crash. After a few days the ache may intensify to a pain in the back, neck, leg, or arm. The pain can be severe enough to make it difficult to get out of bed, do household chores, or work.
A herniated disc cannot be seen on an x-ray. If your doctor suspects a herniated disc, she will perform an MRI or a CT scan to confirm the diagnosis.
Treating a Herniated Disc
Treatment of a herniated disc will depend on the severity and location of the disk herniation. Some people find that their symptoms improve gradually without medical care; others require physical therapy, or even surgery, before they can return to normal activity.
Get Compensation for Your Herniated Disc Injury
Many insurance companies are unwilling to compensate accident victims for herniated disc injuries. They make excuses such as “there is no proof that injury was caused by the accident” or “you have pre-existing arthritis”. These are simply insurance company tactics to get you to agree to a lower settlement.
Ostroff Law can help you collect the evidence you need to get compensation you deserve for your herniated disc injury. We investigate the scene your Pennsylvania car accident, examine your medical records and deal with the insurance company and paperwork on your behalf. We do everything possible to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.
While we handle your case, you can concentrate on getting well. Call Ostroff Injury Law at 800-688-6489 to schedule your free, no obligation case evaluation.
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