Posted From: https://www.dolmanlaw.com/injection-therapy-following-car-accident/
Spine and back injuries are an exceptionally common result after someone has been involved in a motor vehicle accident. Clients often show up at our office in varying levels of pain after such accidents, hoping we can help them to get on the right track towards recovery. Sometimes their pain level improves over time; other times it progressively gets worse to the point that’s it’s a constant disturbance in their normal life.
Car accidents are so unexpected. But what my clients are often even more surprised about is just how debilitating back pain can be. In our experience as a law firm, these injured victims who are suffering from this kind of debilitating pain are desperately seeking a solution. Injection therapy could just be the answer. Although it does not work for all patients, in all cases, the patients who do see results are often very pleased with the pain-relief they experience.
More traditional diagnosis techniques, like an MRI, don’t always reveal the exact location of an injury or the exact source of pain. More recently, techniques have been developed that serve multiple purposes, two of which are to help locate the sources of the back pain, while simultaneously relieving pain. These two types of injections serve the same purpose but are used for different parts of the back. The general idea is to inject pain medication into an area; if the pain is gone, then the causal area has been determined.
Selective Nerve Root Blocks
Selective Nerve Root Blocks (SNRB) are used to help diagnose the exact location that is causing pain in a patient’s neck, while also helping to alleviate some of the actual pain. During an SNRB, the nerve is injected by guiding a needle through a small gap at the point where to vertebrae meet. This is called the foramen. [Read this article to learn more about the basic anatomy of the spine.]
Two medications are often used, either together or one at a time. The first of these medications is a steroid, an anti-inflammatory medication (usually cortisone) that reduced painful swelling. The second medication is a numbing agent called lidocaine which is used to reduce pain. In order to ensure the needle is guided into the correct spot, fluoroscopy (a form of live x-ray) is used to help guide the doctor.
The way in which this type of injection can be diagnostic is almost too simple—but extremely effective. Basically, if the patient’s pain goes away after the injection, it can be inferred that the pain generator is the specific nerve root that has just been targeted. The anti-inflammatory goes to work reducing the swelling and tension in the area, and the numbing agent instantly stops the pain. It’s similar to receiving a Novocain shot at the dentist. The results are instantaneous.
Because of this immediate result, a Selective Nerve Root Block can be a crucial factor in determining the source of pain when other techniques fail. In addition to the diagnostic function of SNRBs, they can actually provide a great source of therapeutic relief for lower back pain, radiating pain, pain from herniated discs, and neck pain.
The reason for nerve root pain in the neck and back is compression. When an injury or old age causes the vertebra to push down on a nearby spinal nerve root, it becomes pinched and inflamed. The result is a debilitating pain in the neck, back, or extremities.
This technique is also used to help patients more easily tolerate physical therapies. Often, the level of pain a person is experiencing can greatly reduce their ability to perform the exercises and stretches that will help them to get better. If the patient can have time without the debilitating pain, they can move along in therapy more quickly.
SNRB injections are more difficult to perform than the more standard epidural steroid injections, which is why they should be performed by an experienced physician. Since the injection site is next to the nerve root itself, it can occasionally cause pain in the area or nearby extremities to temporarily worsen.
Success rates vary depending on the primary diagnosis and whether or not injections are being used primarily for diagnosis. Immediately after the injection, patients often feel a noticeably lesser degree of pain or even no pain at all. However, this is only from the numbing agent which will wear off in a few hours. After that, the anti-inflammatory will take a few days to kick in. Once the cortisone starts working, the pain relieving effects last anywhere from a few weeks to many months. While there is currently no definitive research to clearly dictate the frequency of SNRBs, it is considered reasonable to limit the injection to three times annually.
Facet Joint Blocks
The facet joints are responsible for allowing your back to be flexible, enabling you to bend and twist. Nerves branch off from your spinal cord through these joints on their way to other parts of your body. The facet joints can become painful due to arthritis of the spine, repeated stress to the area, or from a back injury.
When the facet joint itself is the generator of the patient’s back pain, a facet joint block injection can be utilized to alleviate the pain. Similar to SNRBs, facet block injections can be both a diagnostic tool and an alleviator of pain. Just like the nerve block injections, facet joint blocks can isolate and confirm the specific source of back pain too. They also work to numb the source of pain and soothe the inflammation for the patient.
The procedure is nearly identical to that of the SNRB. In a facet block procedure, physicians use fluoroscopy to guide the needle into the facet joint capsule itself. At this point, they inject the numbing agent lidocaine and/or a steroid, likely cortisone, as an anti-inflammatory agent. If the patient’s pain ends after the injection, it can be inferred that the pain generator was indeed the specific facet joint capsule that was injected. There are very few risks associated with this technique.
Dolman Law Group
If you or a loved one has neck, back, or extremity pain that cannot be soothed, you should consider having therapeutic injections. If this procedure is right for you, it will be recommended by an experienced physician. Likewise, if you are unaware of the cause of your nerve or joint pain, you should consider one of the injections above.
Dolman Law Group works with our clients to ensure that they recover completely: physically, emotionally, and financially. If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of a car accident, and now you have neck or back pain, you should seek medical treatment right away. After you have secured health care, be sure to contact an experienced attorney at Dolman Law Group. You can call us at 727-451-6900 or send us an email through our contact page.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765
The post Injection Therapy Following a Car Accident appeared first on Dolman Law Group.
Posted From: http://gulfcoastrehab.us/blog/b_67159_a_to_z_guide_to_how_lower_back_pain_is_diagnosed.html
A to Z Guide to How Lower Back Pain is Diagnosed
Ever had a doctor recommend a test without a full explanation as to what it is and why you need it? You’ve likely heard of some tests healthcare professionals use to diagnose low back pain like an X-ray or MRI, but many folks have no idea what these tests do or even what the acronyms stand for.
An imaging test is not always warranted, and simpler tests like X-rays can often be performed right in office without leaving the building so the healthcare professional can get immediate results. If your doctor determines you need a test to diagnose the cause of your low back pain, here is an A to Z guide to some imaging and other types of tests they may use:
Blood Tests and Lab Work
These are not routine when attempting to diagnose the cause of low back pain. A doctor may order such tests though to look for inflammation, infection, a genetic marker common to reactive arthritis, or other arthritis.
A bone scan may detect an infection or fracture, or find a bone disorder. To perform this test, a tiny amount of radioactive substance is injected into the bloodstream. This collects in areas of the bones containing an abnormality. Scanned images can show joint disease, irregular bone metabolism, or abnormal blood flow.
Computerized Tomography (CT)
CT scans show spinal structures X-rays cannot show, like tumors, fractures, or spinal stenosis. A computer forms a three-dimensional image using multiple two-dimensional pictures.
A healthcare professional may turn to this diagnostic procedure when others fail to show the cause of low back pain. Dye is injected into the spinal disc thought to be the source of discomfort. Pressure from the fluid will cause the disc to become symptomatic if it is the reason for pain. Discographies are useful in situations where lumbar surgery has been recommended, or when pain continues despite less invasive treatments.
This term encompasses a body of procedures which can confirm the diagnosis of lumbar radiculopathy. These include:
· Electromyography (EMG) – assesses electrical activity in a muscle using fine needles inserted in the muscle to detect if muscle weakness results from a problem with nerves responsible for control.
· Nerve Conduction Studies (NCS) – Often performed along with an EMG as a way to exclude conditions that mimic radiculopathy. Two sets of electrodes are placed over the muscles. The first set performs a mild shock to stimulate the nerve. The second set records the nerve’s electrical signals to pinpoint whether conduction is slowed, an indicator of nerve damage.
· Evoked Potential (EP) Studies – Two sets of electrodes are used: one stimulates a sensory nerve and the other is placed on the scalp to record the speed of the nerve’s signals to the brain.
Low back pain experts like chiropractors perform an examination and ask a series of straightforward questions to diagnose lower back pain. You will provide a complete medical history either on an intake form or verbally. The medical professional will then perform a physical exam to identify any serious conditions that may be causing your lower back pain. During the exam, you may be asked about onset, site, and severity of your pain; duration of your symptoms; limitations or loss of range of motion; and previous episodes or any health conditions that might be related to the pain.
We recommend you take time to think about and write out your medical history prior to your appointment, and include any injuries or accidents especially motor vehicle accidents, falls, work injuries, or others. Include the dates, if and where you were treated, symptoms, and any other information you can remember. This will save time at your appointment and be immensely helpful to your medical care provider to diagnose your condition and recommend effective treatment.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Magnetic forces are used to form a computer-generated image of soft tissues like blood vessels, ligaments, tendons, and muscles. By comparison, X-rays show only bony structures. MRIs can reveal infection, inflammation, tumor, disc herniation or rupture, and pressure on a nerve.
Involve injecting a dye into the spinal canal so that nerve compression can be visible on an X-ray or CT scan.
Ultrasounds use high-frequency sound waves to obtain images. The sound wave echoes are recorded into a real-time visual image to show tears in ligaments, muscles, tendons, and soft tissue masses that may be causing low back pain.
This is the most standard of tests and usually the first one taken so a doctor may look for broken bones or an injured vertebra. X-rays show bones, misalignments, and fractures.
Call Today for a Risk Free Consultation
Gulf Coast Rehabilitation and Wellness Center offers a complete risk free lower back pain evaluation. Our trained medical experts examine your health and customize a treatment plan using various methods to relieve lower back pain including spinal adjustments, lower back pain exercises, massage by a licensed massage therapist, and weight loss management among others. We believe in treating the whole person instead of just focusing in on one problem to achieve overall health and wellness.
Call (727) 541-2520 or visit http://gulfcoastrehab.us/ to schedule an appointment to discuss your low back pain, an injury, chronic pain, or your general health.
Posted From: https://www.dolmanlaw.com/faq-about-whiplash/
Whiplash1 is a type of neck injury that can occur when the head jerks suddenly and forcefully backward and forward on the neck. It is called “whiplash” because the motion resembles the cracking of a whip. While “whiplash” is a non-medical term, it is commonly used to refer to strain injuries to the muscles, ligaments, tendons, cartilage, and other tissues in a person’s neck. It can cause a number of serious and uncomfortable symptoms, including neck pain and stiffness, limited range or motion, pain when moving, shoulder pain, pins and needles in the arms and shoulders, headaches, dizziness, fatigue, sleep disturbances, back pain, depression, jaw pain, difficulty concentrating, and others. In some cases, whiplash can lead to chronic neck pain that can last for months or even years after an accident occurred.
What Kinds of Accidents Can Cause Whiplash?
Any type of accident that causes a sudden and forceful snapping of the neck can result in a whiplash injury. That being said, whiplash is most commonly associated with rear-end vehicle accidents. Some of the other types of accidents that have the potential to cause whiplash include the following:
- Car accidents
- Train accidents
- Bus accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Sports injuries
Notably, whiplash does not only occur as the result of an accident. For example, people who ride roller coasters or other thrill rides have been known to sustain whiplash injuries due to the forces experienced on the ride. In addition, whiplash can be the result of intentional violence and is commonly associated with shaken baby syndrome. The only way to be certain that a stiff or sore neck is whiplash is to be evaluated by a physician, so you should always go see a doctor if you suspect that you have injured your neck.
Is Whiplash Treatable?
Fortunately for victims, whiplash is treatable and many people recover within a few weeks of their injury. The purpose of medical treatment is to manage pain during the recovery period, restore your normal range of motion, and get you back to your daily activities as quickly as possible. Not every case of whiplash is treated the same way, and more serious injuries may require more aggressive treatment.
Some of the more common whiplash treatments include the following:
Rest – In mild cases, your physician may recommend that you simply rest and avoid moving your neck too much. Keep in mind that too much rest may actually prolong your recovery, however.
Applying Ice or Heat – The application of ice or heat to your injury may help with pain and stiffness.
OTC Pain Relievers – The first line of pharmaceutical treatment involves the use of over-the-counter pain relievers such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or other analgesics such as acetaminophen.
Prescription Drugs – If you are experiencing severe pain or your pain does not respond to over-the-counter medication, your physician may prescribe stronger pain relievers.
Muscle Relaxants – If you are having muscle spasms related to your injuries, your physician may prescribe muscle relaxants such as valium.
Injections – If you are experiencing pain related to your facet joints, your physician may recommend cervical facet joint injections to help manage your pain.
Can I Recover for my Whiplash-Related Losses?
Whether or not you will be able to recover compensation for the losses you have sustained as a result of your injury depends on whether your accident was caused by someone else’s negligence.2 Generally speaking, negligence occurs when a person fails to use the degree of care that would ordinarily be used by a reasonable person in similar circumstances. For example, a driver who follows you too closely and hits the back of your car when you slow down as you approach a stoplight would likely be deemed negligent. Similarly, if train company fails to adequately maintain its vehicles and that failure results in an accident, the company could probably be held liable for any injuries that occurred as a result. Whether negligence occurred in a particular situation depends on a number of factors, so it is important for all accident victims to speak to a lawyer.
Call a Clearwater Auto Accident Attorney Today for a Free Consultation
If you have sustained whiplash or any other type of neck or back injury in an accident, you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible. Importantly, waiting to retain an attorney could potentially result in the loss of your right to file a claim or the loss or destruction of evidence that is critical to your case. At the Dolman Law Group, our Clearwater car accident lawyers are committed to providing effective and aggressive representation to each client we take. To learn more about how we can help you, call us today at 727-451-6900.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765
The post FAQ about Whiplash appeared first on Dolman Law Group.
Posted From: http://gulfcoastrehab.us/blog/b_66973_everything_you_need_to_know_about_whiplash_and_car_accidents.html
Everything You Need to Know about Whiplash and Car Accidents
Did you know whiplash occurs in phases? We will get to that in a minute. First, let’s define whiplash. The sudden movement of the head by force resulting in damage to neck muscles, ligaments, and connective tissues is whiplash. This kind of neck injury can occur with back and forth motions or sideways, like if your vehicle is T-boned.
Four Phases of Whiplash
Now let’s discuss the mechanics of whiplash and the phases of the injury. Whiplash most often occurs during a rear-end collision. In less than one-half of a second, your body is thrown forward and then pulled back with intense speed and force. All four phases of whiplash occur in this small increment of time.
There is a different force acting on your body at each of the phases of whiplash. Each contributes to the injury.
In phase one, your car is pushed out from under you during a rear-end impact. This causes your mid-back to flatten against your seat, resulting in the compression of the discs and joints in your cervical spine (neck). Your seat back then pushes your torso forward while your head moves backward acting as opposing forces on your neck. The head restraint on your seat can limit the distance your head travels if it is in the proper position, and reduce injury up to 20 percent. Alas, much of the injury will have already occurred before your head ever touches the head restraint.
In phase two, your torso has accelerated as far out as possible. Your head continues to move rearward forcing your neck into an abnormal S-curve. Your seat back recoils forward, springing the torso onward, resulting in a shearing force of the cervical spine causing much damage to the neck. Bones, discs, joints, and nerves are now injured.
It is during phase three that your torso descends back down in your seat. Your head is now in its peak acceleration movement forward. Your car is now slowing down.
In phase four, the seat belt halts your torso. Your head continues moving forward resulting in a forceful bending motion of your cervical spine causing strain to ligaments and muscles along with torn fibers in discs, and unnatural positions of the vertebrae. Additionally, the spinal cord and nerve roots are stretched and irritated. Your brain may even hit the inside of the skull.
Whiplash injuries manifest in a wide variety of ways and combinations, and may include neck pain, disc herniation, muscle and ligament damage, loss of range of motion, back pain, fatigue, headaches, cognitive changes, mild to moderate brain injury, and dizziness.
Neck Pain Recovery
Mild whiplash injuries heal well under a year with the proper care of a chiropractor. For 20 percent of people who suffer whiplash, their injuries will continue to cause pain, loss of range of motion, and weakness long after their car accident.
All is not lost. A skilled health care professional like an experienced chiropractor successfully treats a unique and complex condition like whiplash. Chiropractors combine spinal manipulations with other therapies like massage and exercise rehabilitation to achieve results and relief from neck and back pain. Patients who see the quickest recovery also follow the home care routine and activity restrictions set by their chiropractors.
Call Today for Neck Treatment
Gulf Coast Rehabilitation and Wellness Center has over 40 years’ experience treating whiplash and injuries sustained from car accidents, sports and work injuries, slips and falls, or other traumatic incidents. Our experienced medical professionals offer a risk free consultation and complete medical examination.
In addition, through Gulf Coast Rehabilitation and Wellness Center, you may learn which attorneys in the Pinellas Park area are best equipped to handle car wreck cases like yours while also receiving treatment for your injuries
Call (727) 541-2520 or visit http://gulfcoastrehab.us/ to discover how chiropractic care in Pinellas Park can help with your whiplash or other car accident neck pain injuries.
Legal Disclaimer: Please note 1-800-SOS-PAIN and Gulf Coast Rehabilitation & Wellness Center are not legal referral services, and provide medical services only. 1-800-SOS-PAIN and Gulf Coast Rehabilitation & Wellness Center are not responsible for the outcome of your legal case, nor any relationship you may have with an attorney for any reason.
Posted From: http://www.sheldonroadchiropractic.com/blog/post/how-many-chiropractic-adjustments-will-i-need.html
The short answer to this question is, “It depends.”
For example, the number of recommended chiropractic adjustments may depend on why you sought chiropractic care in the first place. Were you concerned with pain, or recovery from an injury, or did you seek care to promote your overall health and wellness? The national average when dealing with pain and injury is 20 to 22 adjustments per patient, per injury. When the initial pain or injury has been relieved and treatment moves more into the area of general wellness care and health maintenance, the number of adjustments is almost always a partnership between the chiropractor and the patients. They work together to determine overall goals and set up an appropriate treatment schedule.
Many patients find relief in their first visit and see considerable progress within a week or two of regular visits, and regular adjustments can become less necessary as your body stabilizes. Of course, this varies from patient to patient, depending on the nature of the injury and the stage of treatment they are in. In the first or acute stage, when the patient has first consulted a chiropractor, the primary goal may be to relieve pain and increase mobility, so several adjustments a week may be required to accomplish this.
However, the scar tissue and postural imbalance that can build up around spinal injuries can take some time to heal completely, so there may be a reconstructive or healing phase of treatment. This stage seeks to improve the strength and flexibility of soft tissue surrounding the area of the original injury. During this phase there are commonly fewer adjustments – from once a week to once a month. At first the patient may find in nearly every visit that their spine has slipped back out of adjustment and requires correction. When the spine starts holding its adjustments, however, treatment can be reduced to a check-up every few months.
The number of recommended adjustments may also vary depending on the nature of the services provided by the individual chiropractor. Some treatment approaches seek to correct problems in a few sessions, while others take a more long-term approach, constantly evaluating the patient’s progress and changing the treatment regimen accordingly to not just heal the immediate injury but develop a more healthy spine and lifestyle. Chiropractic care is to some extent an art form; there are many ways to adjust the spine, and many ways to determine whether the adjustment has been successful. This can depend on the chiropractor’s personal style, where they were educated, their experience, and many other factors.
To some extent the determination of how many adjustments you will need depends on you, your personal goals, and how much you want to benefit from chiropractic care. Some patients seek only resolution of pain or discomfort from an injury, and are not as interested in long-term therapies to improve their spinal and general health. Others choose to pursue treatment because they recognize the importance of maintaining a healthy spine, to prevent future injuries and increase their quality of life.
Sheldon Road Chiropractic & Massage Therapy
10930 Sheldon Road
Tampa, FL 33626
Posted From: http://www.sheldonroadchiropractic.com/blog/post/understanding-spinal-anatomy.html
Your spine, or backbone, is the primary physical support for your body. The spine is composed of 33 separate vertebrae, which are flexible and permit standing, bending over, and twisting. The bony vertebrae encase and protect the spinal cord, which is connected directly to the brainstem. A healthy spine is flexible and strong, and it contributes to strong muscles and bones. However, injury, strain or disease can cause problems with the spine such as pain, inflammation and restricted movement.
The spine develops from infancy into adulthood, gradually adapting itself from a C-shape, which is suitable for crawling, to an S-shape, which is the natural shape for two-legged walking. The natural curves in the spine serve to cushion impact from movement, absorb shock, preserve balance, and allow range of motion.
The three main curves in the spine are known as the cervical curve (the neck region), the thoracic curve (the upper back) and the lumbar curve (the lower back). There are 7 cervical vertebrae, 12 thoracic vertebrae, 5 lumbar, 5 sacral and 4 coccygeal. The sacral and coccygeal are the lowest vertebrae in the spine, below the lumbar area. Good muscle tone is important to help maintain proper posture and spinal alignment. It is also important for us to put effort into maintaining proper posture by training our bodies to walk, stand, lie, and sit such that the lowest possible amount of strain is placed on our spine, muscles, and ligaments.
Twenty-four of the vertebrae in your spine are moveable. They are cushioned by intervertebral discs which act like coiled springs. They are fluid filled and, as we age, become more brittle, causing us to get shorter. Osteoporosis, a common condition related to aging, as well as injury and strain, can cause spinal discs to herniate or bulge. This condition can cause significant back pain.
Damage to the spinal cord can cause numbness and loss of motor function. Injury to the cervical area can cause tetraplegia (also known as quadriplegia), while injury to the thoracic or lumbar area may result in paraplegia, or loss of the use of the legs and trunk.
There are several common spinal disorders. Lordosis, also known as sway back, occurs when there is abnormal forward curvature of the lumbar spine. Those who have abnormal curvature of the thoracic curve have kyphosis, or hunchback. Scoliosis occurs when there is a mild side-to-side curvature in the spine. Slight curves of less than 20 degrees do not usually present health or medical problems. Moderate curves usually need treatment because they can significantly limit physical activity.
To ensure that your spine stays as healthy as possible, it is important to stay under active maintenance with the chiropractors at Sheldon Road Chiropractic and Massage Therapy. Not only will your spine function at its optimal level but symptomatically your body will feel better as well!
Sheldon Road Chiropractic & Massage Therapy
10930 Sheldon Road
Tampa, FL 33626