Car Accident:

Back and Spinal Cord Injuries

Back injuries are among the most painful and debilitating auto accident injuries that an individual can experience. The complex set of nerves, ligaments, and muscles in the back make it one of the most critical areas of the body, and an injury to any one of these can result in significant discomfort. In some cases, a back injury may cause permanent disability.

After a Car Accident: Back Injury Symptoms

If the nerves, ligaments, and/or muscles in the back are traumatized in a car accident, one of the first signs will be pain and inflammation. Other symptoms of a back injury in a car accident victim include numbness in the feet or legs and difficulty walking or performing daily activities. Abnormal bowel or bladder control and paralysis following an auto accident are signs of a serious back or spinal cord injury. Car accident victims who experience any of these spinal cord injury symptoms should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Types of Back and Spinal Cord Injuries

There are several types of back and spinal cord injuries that can affect car accident victims, including:

  • Vertebral fracture
  • Injury to thoracic (mid-back) discs
  • Injury to lumbar (lower back) discs
  • Pinched nerve
  • Torn muscle, tendon, or ligament
  • Spinal bruising
  • Spinal dislocation
  • Partial or complete spinal cord injury

Back Injury Diagnosis and Treatment

Doctors often use x-rays and MRI scans in order to determine the underlying cause of an individual's back pain. Treatment for auto accident back injuries may include pain relieving drugs and epidural injections of pain killers. In some cases, surgery may be required. Physical therapy, chiropractic treatment, and massage may also help to alleviate back pain after a car accident.