Herniated / Bulging Discs
One common spinal cord injury that can be sustained in an auto accident is a herniated disc, also referred to as either a bulging or ruptured disc. This type of injury is the result of the gravitational forces involved in the impact, which sometimes causes the spinal cord to move out of normal alignment, thus creating the potential for a disc to rupture. Herniated discs can result from collisions occurring at either low or high speeds and have the potential to be grave or even life threatening.
Our experience tells us that herniated discs are frequent outcomes of car accidents due to the violent moving of the disc out of its normal positioning upon impact. Significant pressure is placed on the nerves of the spinal column when a disc is displaced, causing injured parties to have acute pain not only in their back, but also in their legs and arms.
Immediately following an auto collision, many injured victims are charged with adrenaline, which may create sensations that mask the symptoms of serious injuries. Symptoms, such as severe neck or back pain, might not be noticeable until several hours or even a few days after the accident once your body recovers from the initial shock and begins to function at a normal pace again. Insurance companies will use any significant gap in medical treatment as a reason to refuse payment on many legitimate injury claims.
It is of the utmost importance that injured parties seek immediate medical treatment from either a hospital or primary care physician following an automobile collision, including diagnostic testing.
Injured traffic collision victims frequently presume that they will be able to negotiate directly with the insurance company without the assistance of a lawyer. This can be extremely damaging to the victim’s case and often gives the insurance company the upper hand in winning the case.
The consequences of delaying medical care and the assistance of a personal injury lawyer can range from receiving a smaller settlement to receiving no settlement at all. The end result of these delays is a lifetime of uncompensated pain.
Individuals who have suffered personal injuries in traffic collisions involving cars, trucks, bikes or trains must seek legal advice from an experienced personal injury accident attorney as soon as possible. Contact The McAleer Law Firm at 404-622-5337 for your free consultation.Most Frequent Symptoms of Ruptured Discs
One of the most common symptoms that indicates that you may potentially have a spinal cord injury, such as a herniated or bulging disc, is back pain. Usually, the pain will be located in the lower back as the discs in this section are particularly susceptible to herniation in high impact collisions. Rupture of the disc can place significant pressure on the sciatic nerve, which starts at the base of the back and runs down the length of the leg. The pressure from the disc can cause symptoms of pain and numbness that frequently radiate from the injury site down the leg and into the feet.
Depending on the severity of the disc rupture and the available treatment options, these symptoms can eventually become chronic. Exacerbating these symptoms are the muscles of the back becoming weakened as well, thus contributing to even further breakdown of the spine. Injury victims often find that they have difficulty with physical activities such as walking and exercising. Their symptoms may even limit their ability to work their normal job.Insurance Tactics Aimed at Reducing Monetary Recovery
Insurance carriers providing liability coverage habitually aim to deceive the public by using widespread print, radio and television advertisements to spread the message that cars manufactured in this day and age are more durable than ever, which means that it just isn’t possible for “real” injuries to occur. If real injuries are even mentioned by the insurance companies, they are minimized by being referred to as “soft tissue” injuries, which are generally felt by the companies to be less significant and, therefore, worth much less money. The goal of these campaigns is to discourage those who have suffered from serious personal injuries from following through with their attempts to obtain compensation. What the insurance companies conveniently forget to mention is that increased durability of the vehicle actually transfers the force in an impact from the vehicle to the occupant.
The irony behind the insurance companies’ reliance on the “stronger cars” argument is that they were a driving force behind the crusade for stronger, more durable bumpers in order to less the payouts they had to make for property damage. Insurance carriers consistently play both sides of the fence by stating that victims’ injuries are either fraudulent or minor, but then turning the tables and blaming the victims for failure to receive either prompt or sufficient treatment.
Reality is that traffic collisions account for a significant percentage of claims involving injury to the spinal cord. Damages to victims with severe back injuries can include medical expenses, lost wages and physical and mental pain and suffering. Personal injury victims can also experience a decline in their overall health due to the inactivity that results from a spinal cord injury. It is not uncommon for weight gain, diabetes or heart problems to arise as superadded conditions.
If you have suffered a herniated disc, you must obtain legal representation from an experienced injury lawyer, like those at The McAleer Law Firm, in order to ensure that the insurance company pays maximum value for your case. Our attorneys can advise on spinal cord injuries ranging from bulging discs to quadriplegia and paraplegia. Contact us today at 404-622-5337.