A car accident can put tremendous force on the structures in the back, from the cervical spine to the lumbar spine. Back injuries are among the most common in car accidents. Here are just a few:
- Herniated discs: A bulging of the gel-like cushion between spinal discs, putting pressure on spinal nerves.
- Facet joint injuries: Damage to the sliding joints located between the vertebrae.
- Whiplash: Injury to the muscles, ligaments, tendons, discs, or other structures in the neck.
- Pinched nerves (radiculopathy): A compression of a nerve in the spinal column by another structure in the back, such as a herniated disc.
- Sciatica: Compression of the sciatica nerve that originates in the lower back and may cause pain or tingling in the legs.
- Spondylolisthesis: The displacement of a vertebra that causes it to fall onto the vertebra underneath, possibly compressing a nerve in the spinal column.
- Spinal stenosis: Narrowing of the space within the spinal column, possibly compressing the nerves.
These and other injuries might cause constant, long-term pain, known as chronic pain. Patients who suffer chronic back pain after a car accident find it affects their physical and emotional health, interferes with their job and family life, and can lead to depression and other mental health conditions.
Cordisco & Saile LLC can help you prove fault after a car accident and evaluate the effects of your chronic pain so you can get compensation for damages. Call us at 215-642-2335 to set up a consultation.
The Effects of Chronic Back Pain after a Car Accident
Chronic back pain may require long-term (or even lifetime) treatment to manage. You may require:
- Back surgery (rhizotomy, spinal fusion)
- Epidural injections
- Physical therapy
- Stretching and exercise
- Chiropractic treatment
But people who suffer from chronic back pain after their car wreck essentially suffer two kinds of injuries: the first is the physical pain and the second is the impact on their daily life.
Time with family and recreation
Some chronic back pain sufferers may be unable to engage in activities they once enjoyed, especially if it requires physical exertion. For example, they may have to take frequent breaks when playing with their children or may even be unable to play with them in some cases.
Patients may also have to give up hobbies like walking or jogging, riding a bicycle, or anything that requires they hunch over a table.
Earning capacity and lost wages
Chronic back pain may also affect your ability to support your family. It can force you to take time off work or even prevent you from returning to your job entirely. Some people have to take lower-paying jobs because they cannot perform the tasks they once did.
Further, some chronic back pain patients are unable to perform the household tasks and chores they once did.
In addition to losing your income and hiring outside help, you may incur additional expenses for doctor appointments, diagnostic tests, and other treatment expenses, including for physical therapy.
You may also have to hire outside help to perform the household chores you once performed. This might include housework like laundry, cleaning, etc., as well as yard work/landscaping and childcare.
All of these losses and expenses are recoverable if another party caused the car accident that led to your chronic back pain. You may be entitled to an award for your pain and suffering. But you must present convincing evidence that establishes the value of the damages you suffered.
How can I prove what my chronic back pain case is worth?
Work with an attorney at Cordisco & Saile LLC to evaluate your case and identify the short- and long-term expenses and losses you will suffer as a result of your injuries.
First, it is important to make sure you have begun treatment. Seek immediate medical treatment as soon as possible either via an ambulance at the scene, by going to the emergency room, or setting up a doctor appointment shortly after the wreck. Seeking prompt treatment can be essential to a healthy recovery, but is also important to your claim. It helps establish a connection between the accident and your injury.
You will also have to compile evidence that clearly demonstrates the types of losses and expenses you have already encountered, as well as those you can expect to encounter in the long-term.
To do this, we will first help you compile all of the bills, records, and other evidence of your current expenses. This includes:
- Medical records and receipts
- Evidence of lost wages, such as past pay stubs or a letter from your employer
- Receipts from landscapers, housekeepers, and other outside help you hired since your injury
We will also work with a medical expert who can testify regarding your prognosis. An expert witness will testify regarding your medical outlook, the pain and suffering you may experience in the future, as well as your ability to work in the future. This can help establish the long-term medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering you may encounter.
These cases can be more complex because insurers or defendants may argue that your injuries are not as severe as you claim, or that you are fabricating your chronic pain. Thorough medical records and expert testimony can help you establish the existence of your injuries and the extent of your pain, as well as the limitations it causes.
Get Help at Cordisco & Saile LLC Today
If you are facing long-term back pain, it is important to secure legal representation from a car accident lawyer to help you establish your case and entitlement to compensation. Cordisco & Saile LLC can help you file your claim or lawsuit, build the case, and secure the compensation you need. Set up an appointment today by calling 215-642-2335.