Severe car accidents can leave you bed-ridden for a lifetime. The less serious ones can cause back and neck pain that lasts for a long time due to a whiplash-type injury. You can file for a settlement in cases where serious lower back pain after a car accident requires compensation. The right legal support will help you get a considerable amount of settlement fee even in case of minor lower back pain.
The 5 Critical Conditions That Can Cause a Lower Back Pain After a Car Accident
Once you go to a certified doctor or a physician, he/she will conduct a complete medical checkup with high-tech equipment. This checkup will reveal the problems that are causing lower back pain. The most common and critical conditions that may result in severe lower back pain include the following:
1) Spinal Stenosis
Spinal stenosis is a problem that directly affects the spinal cord of a person due to a major accident. In this medical condition, the bones that cover the spinal cord come closer. This causes an overall shrinkage in the channel where the spinal cord rests. This condition usually occurs in old age due to the elongation of the spinal cord over the years. However, it can happen due to a sudden jerk too.
If the source of the sudden jerk for spinal stenosis is a car accident, you need to get in touch with a lawyer immediately and file for auto accident compensation. When this condition occurs due to a car accident, it is typically because of a bulging spinal disc. In severe car accidents, the bulging disk can pose a risk of harming the spinal cord directly, thereby putting you in a situation that can cause immediate paralysis.
The spinal stenosis can also happen due to a fragmented bone putting pressure directly on the bone channel thereby narrowing it further.
2) Disc Herniation
Spinal stenosis is a relatively simpler medical condition compared to disc herniation. Regular physiotherapy exercises can help you lead a normal life after spinal stenosis. Disc herniation, on the other hand, required immediate medical attention and surgery. The herniation surgery process is extremely costly and can cost you several thousand dollars.
In the disc herniation condition, the outer condition of the spinal disc is torn or ruptured due to a high impact. After this rupture, the soft gel-like core of the disc bulges out into the open channel-like cavity of the vertebral column. Therefore, this condition is popularly known as the bulging disc condition too.
The soft gel-like material can put pressure directly on the nearby nerves thereby harming them beyond repair in severe conditions. This causes severe chronic pain. This condition requires surgery as well as regular physiotherapy sessions for a partial recovery over a long period.
3) Lumbar Sprains
The lumbar sprain conditions are extremely common with car accidents that involve a side impact. This medical condition, the ligaments and/or tendons of the lower back are stretched beyond their limits. In severe accidents, these muscles may be completely torn.
In a minor and sudden side impact scenario, these muscles take up a high amount of load in a short period thereby causing chronic pain. This pain is often deceptive and long-term. Most people avoid this condition as something minor and do not go to a doctor for a checkup. However, the pain may easily rise to dangerous levels if the right treatment is not given to the muscles at the right time. Therefore, a medical checkup is a must even if the pain is relatively minor.
Patients with lumbar sprains can make a full recovery within a few months with the right physiotherapy sessions.
4) Degenerative Spinal Disorders
The most severe medical conditions that are commonly a result of a car accident include degenerative spinal disorders. This medical condition can leave a person completely paralyzed in various body parts. This spinal disorder usually occurs in old age. However, an accident can speed it up causing the disorder to occur earlier than usual.
Degenerative spinal disorders can cause herniated or bulging disks, bone spurs, spinal stenosis, etc. These medical conditions are elevated further when a person tries to sit or stand up. It basically causes more pain than usual every time there is a change in the resting position of a person. Spinal disorders can hurt the normal lifestyle of the person significantly.
A few people may find relief from the pain by walking, while others may find relief by sitting down or laying down flat.
5) Facet Injuries
The facet joints are critical components of the backbone of a human. They are surrounded by a thick membrane of tissue which gives flexibility to the overall backbone. This membrane contains a thick and viscous fluid that supports the body weight and lubricates the facet joints.
In serious car accidents, the facet joint may suffer damage and break down. It may affect the surrounding membrane thereby causing it to rupture beyond repair. Once fractured, the membrane cannot hold the viscous fluid anymore. The loss of fluid directly translates to the loss of lubrication, which in turn creates a problem for the movement of the backbone. Broken facet joints cannot limit the movement of the backbone around the spinal cord and cause severe pain. It can also result in paralysis if left unattended.
How to Diagnose Lower Back Pain?
The diagnostic procedure for these medical conditions differs from case to case. However, a certified doctor is well equipped with the right high-tech machines to finish the whole diagnostic procedure. Here is how they can diagnose the pain for the top 5 critical medical conditions.
- Diagnosing the Spinal Stenosis Condition: MRI Scan
An MRI scan can reveal the spinal stenosis condition quickly. It can scan the overall girth of the spinal cord column accurately. Even an X-ray is helpful in helping the doctors check the overall girth of the column.
If you are facing problems in moving side to side after the accident, you may be facing this medical condition.
- Diagnosing the Disc Herniation Condition: MRI and X-Ray scan
Disc herniation is detectable through an MRI and an X-ray scan. A quick scan will reveal inconsistencies in the backbone structure of the individual within minutes.
Disc herniation causes severe pain in the lower back when you try to move forward or bend backward. If you have a problem standing up or sitting down, it is possible that you are facing the problem of disc herniation. Crackling noises from the back too are a symptom of this medical condition.
- Diagnosing the Lumbar Sprain Condition: Not easily detectable
Lumbar sprains are not easily detectable through X-ray or MRI scans. One can only feel it internally. It may cause visible swelling or redness near the lower back of the individual, however, one cannot be 100% sure about this medical condition without the consultation of an expert.
A certified physician is a right person to have a look at this medical condition to identify it correctly. Only a professional can identify a lumbar sprain since he/she has the experience of seeing this condition on multiple occasions. The physician may ask you to move in certain ways to further drill down to the core of the medical condition and identify its exact location.
- Diagnosing the Degenerative Spinal Disorders: Detectable through various means (X-Ray scan, MRI scan, Doctor’s Expertise)
Degenerative spinal disorders start off with lumbar sprains, spinal stenosis, or disc herniation and then worsen over the years. There is no set way to predict how and when will this condition affect your lifestyle over the next few years. However, a certified physician can predict the onset of this medical condition and prescribe the right exercises to prevent it.
You should get the expert consultation of a doctor/physician even in case of minor lower back pain since it might arise from one or more of these serious medical conditions.
- Diagnosing the Facet Injuries: Detectable through the Injection Dyeing procedure
Detection of facet injuries requires high-tech medical equipment. The dyeing procedure is the most accurate method of detecting facet injury. However, it is extremely expensive. It can easily cost up to several thousand dollars. This is where the settlement claims come into the picture. Without the right amount of settlement claim, your personal finances will take a toll on the detection process.
If due to some reason, the dyeing injection process does not show an accurate result, an MRI scan is helpful too.
Short Term and Long Term Solutions to Lower Back Pain
Now that you have identified the source and type of the problem, it is time to find the right solution to it. The solutions for these 5 critical conditions differ widely.
Short Term Solutions:
- Spinal Stenosis Condition: The doctors may suggest physiotherapy sessions along with regular massages to ease the pain. In more serious cases, surgery is the only option to lead a normal life.
- Disc Herniation Condition: Back braces can help a person relieve the pain to a certain extent. However, you need surgery in case of extreme bulging of the disks.
- Lumbar Sprain Condition: Regular physiotherapy sessions can help a person recover from this condition completely over time.
- Degenerative Spinal Disorders: There is no fixed cure to these medical conditions. A person may require multiple surgeries over the course of several years along with regular physiotherapy sessions.
- Facet Injuries: Short term solutions include the use of painkillers and back braces to minimize the pain. The self-healing process for this condition may take several years. Under such situations, the person needs to stay extremely careful and prevent extreme physical movement for years.
Long-Term Solutions: Surgery is the most effective way of dealing with all these medical conditions. Expert surgeons can replace the damaged components of the vertebral column with synthesized or 3D printed components. This long-term solution is still not permanent. It can help you lead a relatively normal life; however, you need to still stay extremely vigilant about the amount of physical stress that you take on your back.
Long Term Repercussions of Lower Back Pain
The major problem associated with lower back pain is that people with a severe condition can rarely lead normal lives. In most cases, chronic pain can harm the lifestyle of the person without any warning. Therefore, the person needs to stay prepared for handling the pain effectively with the use of first-aid and painkillers.
The person might also require regular physiotherapy sessions for several years to build up the strength in the backbone. During the session, a certified physiotherapist will help the person with controlled yet painful exercises that build up the strength of the muscles back gradually. These sessions can easily cost several hundred dollars for a few minutes.
Regular health checkups and surgeries too might become part of the daily routine of the person. In short, a person with a serious medical condition cannot lead a happy and healthy lifestyle after a severe car accident.
How to Get Lower Back Pain After Car Accident Compensation from the Party at Fault?
All the long and short-term solutions mentioned above consume a huge chunk of financial resources. Without a full-fledged insurance scheme, one can easily lose a fortune in trying to get his/her life back. Even after getting the necessary medical treatment of the best doctors in the world, a person cannot expect to recover completely.
This is where the settlement claim helps the person get a slightly better lifestyle. With the necessary legal help, the victim of the accident can file for a settlement claim that covers both the immediate medical costs as well as the loss of future earning capacity costs. The best auto accident lawyers can help you get the deserved amount of settlement from the insurance company so that you can lead a relatively comfortable lifestyle even after a major car accident.
Follow these steps to get compensation for your lower back pain after a car accident.
1) Get a Lawyer
Hire the most reliable legal firm to get in touch with the best auto accident lawyers in the industry. These lawyers will help you with the end-to-end process of getting a claim. The lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to get a generous payout as part of the settlement. He/she will also help you file the settlement claim in the right way.
2) Get a Full-Fledged Medical Report from Your Doctor
Get a complete record of your medical condition from your physician/doctor from day one. You need to show hard evidence on how your life has changed after the accident to convince the jury for a higher payout. Having the necessary medical bills and reports will help you prove your point better. Lawyers with the right connections in the industry will help you get the necessary reports quickly.
3) Assess the Scope of Damages from the Accident
Assess the scope of damage to your current lifestyle after the accident. You need to carefully assess all the current damages to your lifestyle both quantifiable as well as unquantifiable and file them in the settlement claims. Most people filing a claim the first time do not know all the different categories in which they can file for a claim. The right legal support can help people in such cases.
You can also choose to file for pain and suffering claim settlement without a lawyer. However, it is strongly advisable for you to carry out the procedure with legal help.
4) File for a Settlement
Once you have carefully assessed the condition, it is time to file the documents and the case against the party at fault. A professional auto accident lawyer can review your documentation and case file beforehand to make the necessary changes. He/she will ensure that your case gets accepted quickly.
5) Fight the Case in the Court or Settle It Outside
Finally, after you have filed the case against the third-party it is time to fight the case at trial. Most of the time (when the third-party is completely at fault), the defense lawyer will try and settle the case outside the courtroom. Under such situations, the powerful negotiation skills of your lawyer can be helpful to get you a higher settlement amount.
Lower back pain can easily hamper your lifestyle depending on its overall severity. It also poses a serious threat to your spinal cord. People with higher and sudden lower back pain (most likely through an accident) face a risk of permanent paralysis upon high levels of strain. If you are dealing with even a slight amount of lower back pain after an accident, you should get the expert advice of a certified physician or doctor immediately.
Contact a reliable legal firm as soon as possible after the accident so that you can file for the lower back pain after car accident compensation without any issue.