Pittsburgh Neck and Back Injury Accident Lawyers
Our car crash attorneys help you recover maximum compensation
Injuries to the neck or back are very common in Pittsburgh car accidents. These injuries can have a significant impact on your life and medical expenses can add up quickly. Negligent drivers often deny responsibility, however, and insurance companies will try to limit your compensation. At Romanow Law Group, our experienced car accident lawyers fight to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
As a result of the sudden jerk and whiplash-like movement during a collision, one or more of the discs in the cervical spine (the neck) slides out of alignment. A disc which slides out of original alignment is deemed a protruding disc, a bulging disc, or— in the more severe cases— a herniated disc, in which the inner contents of the cervical disc rupture through its outer wall.
In the neck, six discs in the spinal column connect seven cervical vertebrae. The inside of the discs consists of a gel-like substance called the nucleus pulposus, which in turn is covered by a series of tough outer fibrous bands called the annulus fibrosus. This anatomy allows the human neck to absorb shock and move around freely in almost all directions, also known as the neck’s range of motion (“ROM”).
At each level of the seven cervical vertebrae, a nerve root exits the spinal canal from the back of the spine and travels down through the neck, shoulder, and arm, and into the hand and fingers. Hence, a herniated disc is said to “impinge” on the nerve root, which will cause pain to radiate along the path of the nerve, so that the victim will start to feel pain and numbness in the arms, shoulders, or fingers, etc., depending on which nerve root is affected. This is a condition known as radiculopathy.
Our car accident attorneys ensure that our clients have access to the state-of-the-art facilities of their choice in seeking the proper treatment for their neck injuries. Treatment for cervical disc herniations often begin with chiropractic and rehabilitative care for several weeks after the car accident.
In some cases, the client must seek pain management therapies including the use of epidural steroid injections (“ESIs”) over a course of three injections to alleviate the pain, ROM restrictions, and radiculopathy. The more severe cases of herniated disc injuries will not heal with conservative treatment and will require surgical intervention.
As with neck injuries, the same whiplashing mechanism will often result in injuries to the lower back or “lumbar spine.” Like a cervical disc herniation, there is a lumbar disc herniation, as well.
The same concepts as with cervical disc herniations, such as nerve root impingement, apply in lumbar herniations, but there is a difference. The nerve root exiting the lumbar spine extends all the way down to the legs, so radicular pain (i.e. shooting pain with numbness and tingling) will travel from the lower back down into the hips or legs as opposed to the hands and upper extremities as seen with cervical herniations.
In severe cases of lumbar disc herniations, a person will feel constant, intractable pain shooting down the legs or buttocks as a result of nerve root impingement. This symptom is also known as “sciatica.” While sciatica symptoms are often felt on one side of the body, some discogenic injuries can result in bilateral (i.e. both sides of the body) symptoms.
A person may feel a combination of right and left leg and foot pain, weakness, tingling or numbness. Sciatica pain is different than other pain in that it is uniquely characterized as searing or sharp, as opposed to throbbing, pain. For severe cases, several surgical procedures are viable options to cure the pain, including a laminectomy, microdiscectomy, or lumbar disc fusion.
If you suffered a neck or back injury in a car accident, our firm retains skilled experts and lifecare planners to ensure you get the treatment you need. We also determine the total damages you have suffered, including the cost of current and future medical expenses related to your injuries.
Our experienced car accident lawyers build strong cases that insurance companies must take seriously. We fight to help you recover the compensation you deserve. Learn more about how we can help. Call 1-844-GET-MORE or contact us online to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys.