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Common Back Injuries After a Car Accident

Published on Jul 5, 2018 at 1:24 pm in Car Accidents.

Recovery from your car accident injuries can be a long and difficult process, especially if the accident was traumatic. Back injuries, in particular, often require extensive and expensive medical treatment. A knowledgeable West Virginia car accident injury lawyer may be able to help you seek a financial award for your damages.

The human spine is delicate and complex. It is not meant to withstand the force of a car collision, which is why so many individuals in car accidents end up with back pain and injuries. The type of back injuries varies depending on the severity of the car accident and the age and health of the victim.  Here you’ll find a list of the most common back injuries experiences after a car accident and how they’re treated.

Herniated Discs

The discs in your spine are there to absorb any spinal impact. In the event of a car accident, these discs can shift. When they shift, the soft, gel-like material in the disc pushes through a crack in the exterior. This compresses nerves and causes pain and numbness in the arms, legs, and back. You may also hear this called a bulging, ruptured, or slipped disk.

Herniated discs are often treatable with non-invasive methods like physical therapy. If the herniations are negatively impacting other vital structure in the body, surgery may be required.

Spinal Fractures

Spinal fractures, or compression fractures, can occur in the middle and lower back after a car crash. When the collision occurs, your upper body may be thrown forward while your lower body stays in one place. If this happens, the vertebrae in your spine can be pulled apart. In more severe cases, these fractures may lead to spinal cord injuries. A person who has just experienced spinal fractures should not be moved. They may experience numbness, tingling, weakness, or loss of bladder and bowel control.

Some spinal fractures may heal on their own with rest and immobilization, while other cases may require surgery.


This injury occurs when the vertebra in your back shift out of place because of tremendous stress. They may slip below or above each other. A person with this injury may experience numbness, pain, and difficulty walking. In severe cases, the victim may lose neurological function.

A spinal specialist will determine the best course of treatment. Typical courses of treatment include the use of a back brace, surgery, and physical therapy.


Whiplash is often a result of rear-end auto wrecks. When a person’s body propels forward but their head stays in place, they may develop symptoms of whiplash. This injury varies greatly from person to person and may exhibit signs immediately or not for days. The most common symptoms include pain, fatigue, stiffness, blurred vision, and dizziness.

Whiplash is often treated with anti-inflammatory medication, light exercise and stretching (possibly in a physical therapy setting), and heat.

Car accident back injuries can have devastating, life-long effects. Our attorneys at DiPiero Simmons McGinley & Bastress, PLLC are dedicated to helping you fight for what you deserve. Contact us today.

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