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Car Accidents & Chronic Pain Back Injuries

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One common result of car accidents are back injuries and chronic pain.  Even a relatively minor accident can lead to a variety of possible back injuries. Below are some of the more common back injuries:

  • Lumbar sprains and strains. The body can sustain excessive physical force during car accident.  This can cause muscles and connective tissues (tendons, ligaments) to stretch beyond their normal range. A strained back muscle or sprained tendon may become inflamed and lead to chronic pain in the lumbar region. You might also experience restricted movement with one of these soft tissue injuries. 
  • Herniated disc. The bones (lumbar vertebrae) in your spinal column are separated by gel-filled spinal discs. When you have a herniated disc, the gel-like material normally contained inside the spinal discs may come into contact with nerve tissue, which can be a source of severe pain.
  • Discogenic pain.  Discogenic pain develops when inflammation or other problems with a spinal disc irritate the nerves. In some cases, this radiating pain continues down to other areas, such as the groin, legs, or feet in a related condition known as sciatica. If the pain goes away or improves when you lie down, it’s even more likely this is what you are experiencing.
  • Spinal stenosis. The bone channel housing your spinal cord and nerves can become narrow due to a severe car accident. This happens when a bone fragment or ruptured disc slides into the spinal canal. You will likely have sharp, severe back pain from this injury because of the pressure applied to the nerves coming from the spinal column. Intense pain is a warning sign for nerve injury or damage.
  • Cauda equina syndrome. A rare and severe form of spinal stenosis, cauda equina syndrome is a condition where all the nerves in the lower back become compressed. Some symptoms are similar to sciatica, in that issues such as pain, weakness, and numbness may extend beyond the back into one or both legs. This can make it difficult to get up from chairs or stumble when you walk. Other symptoms include bladder problems, incontinence, and sexual dysfunction. If your accident has led to this condition, there is a significant chance you will need surgery.
  • Degenerative spinal disorder. This term generally refers to any of several potential conditions, including spinal osteoarthritis, degenerative scoliosis, and spondylolisthesis. While these conditions are commonly associated with spine tissues breaking down over time from natural aging, there can be an earlier onset caused by physical trauma, such as a car accident.

These are only a few examples of the injuries your back can sustain in a car accident.  If you suffer a back injury, or any other type of injury due to a car accident, it’s important to see your doctor as soon as possible.  Early treatment, medication and physical therapy can potentially help you avoid ongoing pain and permanent damage.  

If you or a loved one are injured in a car accident, call our offices for a free consultation.  We have over 40 years of experience securing our clients the maximum compensation for their injuries.