There are a number of causes of cervical radiculopathy, and a car accident is definitely one of them. Typically, cervical radiculopathy, also known as a pinched nerve, can be caused by disc herniation in a car accident. A disc herniation occurs when the nucleus of an intervertebral disc tears through the disc’s outer ring called the annulus. This can result in pinching of the nerve root. A pinched nerve can also be associated with whiplash.
In a car accident, such as a rear impact, there can be immense force on the neck, and sometimes discs are unable to take this kind of impact. The result is a disc herniation. The herniated disc can place severe pressure on the pinched nerve, resulting in radiating pain.
What are the symptoms of cervical radiculopathy?
Cervical radiculopathy often results in symptoms that include the following.
- Tingling sensation in the fingers or hand
- Weakness in arm, shoulder or hand
- Loss of feeling
- Chronic and consistent pain
If you have recently suffered a car accident, and are suffering from any of these symptoms, consult a doctor immediately. Treatment for cervical radiculopathy can take several forms. Initially, doctors may suggest nonsurgical treatment, which can include a cervical collar, physical therapy, and medications. However, if these do not help relieve symptoms, your doctor may recommend surgery, such as an Anterior Cervical Diskectomy and Fusion (ACDF) or an Artificial Disk Replacement (ADR), to treat cervical radiculopathy.
What kind of damages can I recover for cervical radiculopathy in a car accident?
If, after your car accident, you continue to experience any symptoms such as muscle weakness, numbness, consistent pain, or tingling sensations in your arm, shoulder, or hand, get medical help immediately. A physical examination and diagnostic tests, such as computed tomography (CT) scans, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, and electromyography (EMG) will help identify the condition. If you suffered cervical radiculopathy after a car accident caused by another person’s negligence, you can file a claim for compensation.
Your damages may include medical expenses such as diagnostic tests, lost income as well as diminished earning capacity, disability, and pain and suffering. The amount of damages can depend on the severity of the pinched nerve, the extent of medical treatment that you underwent for the injury, and other factors. Discuss your claim with a car accident lawyer.