Back Injuries – Herniated Disc
April 28, 2015 | Back Injuries
Herniated disc spinal injuries are often caused by a traumatic accident. The spinal column is composted of intervertebral discs that are sandwiched in between vertebrae. The forces involved in an auto accident or fall can cause the discs to rupture, tear, or herniate. A disc herniation injury is also commonly referred to as a ruptured disc, slipped disc, or prolapsed disc.
When the disc herniates, or tears, it is forced out from between the vertebrae in which it is normally sandwiched. Once outside of its normal position, it can compress and impinge on the bundle of spinal nerves it protects. Once the spinal nerves are affected, the injury carries the potential for much more serious consequences.
Symptoms of a Herniated Disc Injury
The symptoms of a herniated disc vary. Herniated discs can occur in the neck or lower back. Depending on where the injury occurs, the pinching of the spinal column can cause pain which radiates into the areas of the body where the nerve roots travel. Some common symptoms of herniated discs include:
- Numbness, tingling or radiating pain in the hands, feet, arms, or legs
- Muscular weakness
- Reflex interference
- Unidentified pain
Symptoms of a lumbar (low back) herniated disc injury will generally show themselves in the following regions:
- Lower back
- Genital/anal region
The pain associated with a herniated disc is often steady and continuous. Studies also show that the pain generally occurs only to one side of the body. Pain to both sides of the body may indicate multiple herniated discs which protrude into the spinal nerves at different points.
Herniated Disc Diagnosis
Following an accident, emergency room doctors will typically order a few x-rays, write a script for pain medication, and instruct the victim to follow up with their primary care provider. A herniated disc rarely shows up on an x-ray. Herniated disc injuries are commonly diagnosed with one of the following tests:
- Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
- CAT Scan or CT Scan (Computed Tomography)
- Nerve Conduction Studies
The MRI is the most common way to confirm the diagnosis of a herniated disc. An MRI’s powerful magnets allow it to see the soft tissues of the spine better than most other tests, including CT scans.
Herniated Disc Treatment
The treatment of herniated disc injuries will vary greatly depending on the amount and location of the pain. As with most injuries, your medical provider will likely start with conservative options such as medication and physical therapy. If these options fail to relieve the pain, more aggressive options will be required to find permanent relief, such as spinal injections and surgery. Disc herniation surgery is aimed at replacing the disc which has ruptured in order to permanently provide back pain relief to the victim.
Lawyer for Herniated Disc Injuries
As a Top 100 Trial Lawyer, Chris Dixon has helped numerous patients on their road to recovery after a ruptured disc injury. If you are forced to undergo invasive back surgery to repair your herniated disc, it extremely important that you hire an attorney with experience handling back injury claims. The damages associated with back surgery are extremely significant and present multiple future potential complications. An experienced injury lawyer will make sure you are receiving full reimbursement for all aspects of your injuries.
Our aggressive and compassionate legal representation has helped recover over $35,000,000 for injury victims through verdicts, settlements, and judgments. Call our legal team today for a FREE legal consultation by calling (314) 208-2808.