One of the most common injuries that is litigated in personal injury and car accident cases today are herniated disc injuries by drivers or passengers in buses, automobiles or Ubers caused by rear end collisions or sideswipe intersection accidents with other cars or trucks.
Spinal injuries, like herniated discs and bulging discs, are frequently caused by car accidents, premises liability accidents, as well as other types of accidents. They are usually caused by forceful and sudden twisting or whipping of the spine. For the diagnosis & treatment of this kind of serious injury, you must see a car accident orthopedic surgeon or psychiatrist or neurologist doctor who specialized in treating herniated disks.
The quick acceleration and deceleration of a car accident can cause a "whiplash" movement that leads to a disk bulge or herniating disc which can compress nerves and cause pain, numbness, or paralysis
These types of accidents are often challenged in Court by accident reconstruction experts hired by the insurance company who opine the acceleration of the accident or Delta V force could not have caused the injury to the plaintiff.
Rear-end accidents, head-on collisions, and T-bone accidents are common types of car accidents that can result in a herniated disc. The force and velocity of impact in a car accident can rupture the outer shell of a spinal disc, leading to a painful disc herniation. A sudden and violent movement, such as in a T-bone or rear-end crash, can push the fluid out of the center of the disc and through the outer layer, causing a herniated disc. Whiplash can cause damage to the spine resulting in disc herniation in the cervical region Without proper treatment, this injury can result in chronic pain, disability and even paralysis if the spinal cord is damaged. Prompt medical attention is necessary to achieve the best possible recovery.
Herniated discs causing pressure in the neck or cervical spine and lumbar or lower back are illustrated below
Herniated discs are often diagnosed by MRI called magnetic resonance imaging studies. A disc is herniated when the inside part called the nucleus breaks through the outer rim or part of the disc called the annulus and presses on the nerve that runs off the spinal cord. A bulging disc is when the outer part of the disc is not broken through by the inner part or nucleus but presses on the branch of the spinal nerve causing pain. They can be treated and normally respond to conservative treatment. Conservative treatment for a herniated disc can be a cervical or lumbar epidural steroid injection and physical therapy to take the pressure off of the disc pressing on the nerve. See illustration below.
Failing conservative treatment the patient may have to undergo a cervical or lumbar laminectomy with fusion is a spine surgery used to reduce or entirely remove pressure being put on the lumbar area of the spinal cord or spinal nerves by making the spinal canal larger, and then adding spinal stability with fusion.
SURGERY FOR HERNIATED DISCS LAMINECTOMY AND FUSION
A lumbar laminectomy differs from other forms of spinal decompression surgery in that it involves the removal of part of the back part of the vertebrae that covers the spinal cord – the lamina. A bone graft is then used to fuse the affected vertebrae for spinal stability.
A lumbar laminectomy with fusion is typically done after more conservative, nonoperative treatments have failed to produce satisfactory relief of pain the back or extremities. It may also become necessary when a patient begins to experience muscle numbness or weakness, or a loss of bowel or bladder control. A laminectomy may also become part of a discectomy procedure if a surgeon decides he or she needs to remove a portion of the lamina in order to access the herniated disc causing issues with the spinal nerves.
The surgeon begins by making an incision down the center of the back of the neck. The neck muscles are then moved to the side.
Upon reaching the back surface of the spine, the surgeon uses an X-ray to identify the problem vertebra. The lamina is removed, taking the pressure off the back part of the spinal cord and nerves.
Removing the entire lamina in the cervical spine may cause problems with the stability of cervical spine. If the facet joints are damaged during the laminectomy, the spine may become unstable and cause problems later. One way that spine surgeons try to prevent this problem is not to actually remove the lamina. Instead they simply cut one side of the lamina and fold it back slightly. The other side of the lamina opens like a hinge. This makes the spinal canal larger, giving the spinal cord more room. The cut area of the lamina eventually heals to keep the spine from tilting forward.
Settlement and Verdict Value of Herniated disc cases in New York City
The value of a herniated disc case depends upon many factors including the pre-existing condition of the patient , their age , the type of trauma involved and whether the patient is above the age of 40 by which most people have degenerative spine conditions called narrowing or stenosis of the spinal canal, spurs or forward shifting called spondylosis .
In Bronx County , Kings County and New York County non surgical herniated discs can return verdicts or settlements between $150,000 and $300,000.
With surgical intervention such as a laminectomy with fusion herniated disc cases can return verdicts in NYC in the area of 1.2 million dollars or more.
If you have been involved in an accident and suffered a herniated discs call me. Lets discuss your case and see if I can help you achieve justice.