Herniated disc is also known as a slipped disk or a ruptured disk. This commonly occurs in auto accidents, including motorcycle and truck accidents. When it occurs, auto accident victims experience back pain that shoots down to the leg. Even everyday activities can become difficult or intolerable with such a condition. The human spine is made up of bones or vertebrae that are cushioned by small oval pads of cartilage or discs containing a tough outer layer and a soft inner layer. When a herniated disc occurs, a small portion of the nucleus pushes out through a tear in the outer layer into the spinal canal. This condition can irritate a nerve and result in excruciating pain, numbness or weakness in your back as well as your leg or arm.
Like many moderate or even major auto accident injuries, you can have a herniated disc and not even know it. Herniated or bulging discs sometimes show up on spinal images of some people who do not experience symptoms. However, in many cases, herniated or bulging discs can be extremely painful. The most common symptoms of a herniated disc include:
- Sciatica, a radiating, aching pain that starts in your buttock and extends down the back or side of one leg.
- Pain, numbness or weakness in your lower back, neck, shoulder, chest or arm
- Lower back pain that is exacerbated when you sit, cough or sneeze.
You should see a doctor right away if you experience disabling back pain for more than a week. Serious symptoms include loss of bladder or bowel control; increasing pain; and numbness or weakness in one or both legs.
Although herniated or bulging discs are characterized as moderate auto accident injuries, they can be debilitating. You could still be spending a lot of money for medical treatment including physical therapy and chiropractic care. Often, auto accident victims with this condition lose several weeks of work until they recover completely.
If you have suffered such injuries in an auto accident as a result of someone else’s negligence, you can seek compensation to cover medical expenses, loss of wages, cost of physical therapy, chiropractic care or other continued treatment costs. Please contact experienced traffic accident lawyer E. Ryan Bradley today to discuss your herniated disc case.