Posts Tagged ‘whiplash’

Disc Injury After Auto Accident

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

Following a rear end collision it is common for the patient to have whiplash from the impact of the accident.  The sudden impact of being rear ended forces the body into different and opposing directions at a speed that is uncontrollable and near impossible to stop while it’s occurring.

Another term for whiplash is cervical acceleration-deceleration syndrome. The sudden impact causes the head and neck to quickly move in one direction and then another in the opposite direction and this causes the soft tissue to become injured in the process.

Immediately following an accident it is always advised to have an evaluation as soon as possible to rule out any fractures or any life threatening conditions. Most of the time an injured person will be sent home and instructed to follow the R.I.C.E. method to begin the healing process. Soft tissue injuries such as sprains and strains are typically what follow a slight rear end collision but there are times when they develop into more serious grades of injury that involve a more complex treatment.

In about 25% of those cases a disc injury is caused and can become a chronic problem. Most disc related injuries involve a tear in the outer portion of the disc and the nerve endings in them get torn and cause pain. It can take months for those tears to heal and with proper treatment that person can return to their normal daily activities without any residual problems.

Some of the symptoms that a person may experience following whiplash can be;
Dizziness
Headaches
Stiffness
Visual changes
Memory changes
Jaw pain

Some symptoms related to a disc herniation from whiplash are:
Neck pain
Shoulder pain
Tingling or burning sensation in the arm, hand or fingers

Herniated disc are generally diagnosed from a combination of the medical history, examination and imaging studies from MRI. There are different approaches and strategies for the person who was injured in an accident to insure proper healing in order to get back to their normal routine as fast as possible. A common treatment technique for many practitioners is called McKenzie method. These exercises are used to extend or stretch the area of the spine that is injured and helps decrease the pain levels of the person who was injured.

Chiropractic care and home exercises are beneficial and non invasive ways to manage pain following certain types of disc injury following an auto accident.