Herniated Discs Sustained in an Auto Accident – What Accident Victims Should Know

Back injuries are common following auto accidents.  Many victims of auto accidents may not realize that they have sustained a back injury resulting from the accident, as there are many different causes of back injuries.  However, if a person suffers back pain and other complications following an auto accident, that person should consider whether his or her back problems may be a result of the accident.

A common back injury resulting from auto accidents is a herniated disc.  Discs provide a cushion between the vertebra along the spine.  When a disc is injured, the central portion of the disc may protrude, and expose nerve tissue inside the spine.  A herniated disc can cause substantial pain, which can often radiate to other parts of the body.  

If a person herniates a disc in the cervical (upper) portion of the spine, he or she may have nerve pain or numbness and tingling in the neck, arms or hands.  On the other hand, if a person herniates a disc in the thoracic (middle) or sacral (lower) portion of the spine, he or she may have nerve pain or numbness and tingling in the legs and feet.

Many people sustain herniated discs while performing routine activities or sports.  However, a herniated disc sustained in an auto accident may be much more severe than one resulting from a routine activity or sport.  In the most severe of cases, a person may require surgical intervention.

Any person who suffers from back pain, radiating pain, nerve pain, or headaches, should seek medical treatment to determine whether an injury has been sustained and whether that injury may be the result of an auto accident.  A proper diagnosis is necessary before a person can undergo treatment.  Forms of treatment for a herniated disc include prescription medications to manage the pain and inflammation, physical therapy, cortisone and steroid injections, and surgery.

Back injuries, such as a herniated disc, can be extremely debilitating and can limit a person’s routine activities.  If a person sustains a herniated disc in an auto accident caused by another person, the injured victim may choose to pursue compensation to help alleviate the physical, emotional and financial toll associated with his or her injuries. One hospital stay or surgical procedure can cost tens of thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.  As such, many victims consider working with an attorney to discuss legal options for seeking compensation.


Stein & Shulman, LLC has over 45 years of combined experienced in Illinois Accident & Personal Injury Law. You can receive a free and instant case review by calling our office at 312.422.0500.

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