Despite the silly name, whiplash can have symptoms that affect how you live your everyday life. Whiplash is neck injury due to forceful, rapid back-and-forth movement of the neck, like the cracking of a whip. Whiplash most often occurs during a rear-end auto accident, but the injury can also result from a sports accident, physical abuse or other trauma. If you’ve been in a situation which resulted in a whiplash injury, here are 3 reasons why you should leave that whiplash unchecked.
Possible Long-term Complications
Most people who have whiplash feel better within a few weeks, but some people continue to have pain for several months or years after the injury. While it’s tough to determine how any given person will react after sustaining a whiplash injury, there are a few symptoms to look out for to determine if you will suffer long-term complications as a result of whiplash. You might be more likely to have chronic pain if your first symptoms were intense, started rapidly and included the following:
– Severe neck pain
– Pain that spread to the arms
The elderly stand the lost the most if they are involved in an injury which results in whiplash. Those who have suffered whiplash neck injuries as a result of car accidents often complain of dizziness and exhibit motor coordination defects. Persistent neck pain following whiplash injury has also been associated with impairments of balance and possible mild traumatic brain injury or a concussion. These injuries themselves may be a result of damage to the brain itself which causes the post-injury symptom of dizziness.
This can be detrimental to the quality of life of many elderly people because long after an accident resulting in whiplash they may also experience multiple slip and falls at home or work as a result of balance impairments.
Pre-existing Conditions and Risk Factors
There is a myriad of pre-existing conditions and risk factors can affect how long you will be afflicted with whiplash. According to research, the following risks put you at risk for chronic whiplash:
- Being in a rear vector impact versus other vectors
- Having a smaller body mass index in females only or small framed males
- Experiencing immediate or early onset of symptoms (i.e., within 12 hours) and/or more severe initial symptoms
- Experiencing initial back pain
- Experiencing initial decreased cervical spine ROM (females only)
- Experiencing initial upper back pain
- Experiencing initial upper extremity numbness or weakness
- Experiencing initial upper extremity pain
- Experiencing greater subjective cognitive impairment
- Experiencing a greater number of initial symptoms
- Experiencing greater severity or frequency of initial symptoms
- Experiencing high initial pain intensity
- The use of seat belt shoulder harness in the case of low back pain
- The use of seat belt shoulder harness for neck pain
- Having initial physical findings of a limited range of motion
- Experiencing neck pain on palpation
- Experiencing muscle pain following the crash
- Experiencing disturbed vision
- Experiencing initial sleep disturbance or fatigue
- Experiencing initial neurological symptoms, radiating pain into upper extremities
- Having a past history of neck pain
- Ligament laxity
- Having a past history of headache
- Currently suffering headaches
- Evidence of initial degenerative changes seen on radiographs
- Evidence of foraminal stenosis (cervical)
- Evidence of loss or reversal of cervical lordosis
- Being in the front seat position
- Being in the driver seat versus being in the passenger seat for females
- Being in the rear seat position
- Being an occupant of a vehicle manufactured in the late 1980s to early 1990s (OR=2.7 vs those in early 1980s vehicles) This is relevant for rear impact crashes only.
- Experiencing initial generalized sensory hyperalgesia
- Having the head rotated at impact; both frontal and rear
- Being unaware of the impending impact
Whiplash can be quite the monster to deal with. Combined with pre-existing conditions you could really find yourself with mounting debt and pain and suffering. If you have suffered from whiplash as a result of a truck accident, slip, and fall, or work-related accident, contact Shamieh Law.
We’ll make sure the ones responsible are held accountable and get you the compensation you deserve. We’ve been recognized for 2 years straight by the American Institute of Personal Injury attorneys for the attention to detail we give to each of our clients. In addition, our founder Ramez Shamieh has been recognized as a lawyer on the rise in Texas Lawyer magazine, has been on Super Lawyer’s rising stars list for 5 years straight, and D Magazine has nominated Shamieh as one of the best attorneys in Dallas under 40 in 2018. When you contact Shamieh Law, you’re dealing with the best in the business. Contact us today.