Radiculopathy from car accidents is caused by extreme pressure on the spine. The impact of the collision may cause a sudden jolt to the spine and its surrounding tissues, such as discs, vertebrae, and ligaments. The compression of nerves in the spine can lead to excessive pain and numbness in various parts of the body, such as the neck and legs; all of which are signs of radiculopathy.
If signs of radiculopathy require surgery, the medical treatment can be expensive; in addition, it may take time to heal from it. Depending on the severity of the car accident, victims may face long-term medical problems that can interfere with their everyday life. If you have been experiencing radiculopathy, you can recover compensation for medical bills, lost income, pain, and suffering.
What is Radiculopathy?
Radiculopathy refers to the pinching of the nerves in the spinal column. The pinched nerve can affect different areas of the spine such as the cervical, thoracic, or lumbar. Many times, the disorder can result in radiating or radicular pain, hence the name.
Some Types Of Radiculopathy Include:
Cervical Radiculopathy – Cervical radiculopathy is one of the most common results of car collisions. The condition starts when the nerve in the neck is compressed at the point where it branches away from the spinal cord. Pain travels through the arm in the area of the affected nerve. Numbness, tingling, or a pins and needles effect are symptoms.
Lumbar Radiculopathy – Pain radiates down the leg. Weakness, numbness, tingling, or pins and needles may also occur in the leg and foot. Lumbar radiotherapy is popularly known as sciatica. The bowel and bladder nerves are often compressed as well, and when you sit for longer periods, it can worsen your condition.
Thoracic Radiculopathy – Pain radiates in the chest wall and upper abdomen. Weakness, numbness, tingling, or pins and needles are also possible. Thoracic radiculopathy is thought to be less common than Cervical or Lumbar Radiculopathy.
Radiculopathy cannot be prevented. Therefore, it is advisable to stay physically fit by eating healthily and regular exercise. Careful attention to diet and exercise can minimize the risks involved in radiculopathy. Furthermore, you must also take care of your posture. Be aware that certain exercises, and playing sports can cause you injuries.
Symptoms Of Radiculopathy After Car Accident
As the nerves going to the spine travel to different body parts, there are different symptoms that an individual may experience. The signs differ based on the type of radiculopathy.
- Pain in the back, arms, legs, or shoulders;
- Weakness in arms or legs or loss of reflexes;
- Numbness of the skin;
- Abnormal sensations (paresthesia) in the arms or legs.
In some cases, it may happen that you do not experience any symptoms at all. In other situations, you may experience periodic symptoms.
Causes of Radiculopathy
The fundamental causes of radiculopathy are osteoarthritis and degenerative disc disease. Some of the injuries that can increase the risk of radiculopathy are:
- Herniated discs;
- Compression fractures;
- Spinal stenosis;
- Bone spurs;
- Spinal tumors;
Other risk factors that may worsen your condition are aging, heavy lifting, smoking, or operating vibrating equipment.
How can Radiculopathy Treatment Minimize Your Pain?
The diagnosis of the problem can be done through imaging tests such as X-Rays, CT scans, or MRIs. Electrical impulse testing, also known as electromyography (ECG), can help in the diagnosis.
Radiculopathy treatment options include medications. Available medicines include pain relievers, drugs to reduce inflammation, and muscle relaxers. With the use of all these, excessive pain and inflammation can be reduced.
Furthermore, steroid injections or oral steroids can help in reducing the swelling across the nerve root. To minimize pain, you can modify your activity level as well.
Radiculopathy can be treated without surgeries also. By using physical therapies, soft cervical collars, ice, and heat application, pain can be controlled. Surgical procedures may be recommended that include repairing herniated discs, bone spur removal, fusing the bones, or widening the space of the spinal canal.
Need Legal Help? Get In Touch With Us Today
If your radiculopathy has been caused as the result of a car accident or injury because of the negligence of another, a Philadelphia car accident lawyer can assist you in providing clarification about your present condition and radiculopathy symptoms.
They will discuss your case thoroughly and explain how you may be able to recover damages when you have sustained injuries such as spinal cord injuries due to the negligence or careless behavior of others.