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Cervical Disc Injury Lawyer

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The spine, or vertebral column, is formed by intervertebral discs and vertebrae. It spans from the base of the skull to the tailbone (coccyx). The regions that compose the spine include the thoracic, sacral, lumbar, and cervical. The importance of the vertebral column in the body is that it provides structural support, protects the branching spinal nerves and spinal cord, and permits mobility and flexibility. The axial loading of the body is dependent on the intervertebral discs as they act as a cushion for shock absorption between adjacent vertebrae. There are seven vertebral bodies in the cervical spine, starting from the skull base to the thoracic spine and eight pairs of cervical nerves. While the most common cause of a herniated cervical disc is gradual degradation, it may also be the result of trauma from a motor vehicle collision.

When an accident has resulted in trauma, such as a cervical disc herniation, you need the best personal injury lawyer to handle your case and obtain a successful outcome on your behalf. Get started today and receive free, friendly advice from one of our attorneys at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400.

The attorneys at AutoAccident.com have extensive experience in assisting people injured in crashes and optimizing their financial recovery. For cases involving cervical disc herniation and other types of serious injuries, our law firm often works with expert witnesses to determine the extent of our client’s injuries and resulting losses. From there, we will negotiate with the insurance company to obtain fair compensation that will help our clients move forward with their lives. If we have exhausted all attempts at a fair settlement agreement, we will take the case to civil court for a jury to decide on an appropriate award. Do not let the personal injury claims process overwhelm you; our legal team is here to simplify it for you and your family. Reach out to us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced accident attorneys. Our law firm handles cases under a contingency fee basis meaning you owe us nothing unless we obtain a fair financial recovery on your behalf.

What are the Most Common Types of Cervical Disc Injuries?

The most common type of injury to the cervical disc is acute disc herniation or degenerative disc disease. Cervical degenerative disc disease may occur when there is a decreased range of motion from a loss of water content and thus, leading to a susceptibility to a condition known as facet joint disease. This involves the joints of the spine becoming a source of pain for the patient. Conversely, the risk of disc herniation in the cervical spine may increase in cases involving traumatic injuries resulting from contact sports and motor vehicle collisions.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Herniated Cervical Disc?

If there is a herniated disc in the cervical region, a patient may experience pain in the neck followed by these symptoms:

  • Pain that may radiate down the arm to the fingers or hand
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands, arm, or shoulder
  • Weakness of the arms or hands

Since the signs of a herniated disc in the cervical spine may resemble other disorders such as gout, rotator cuff injury, or carpal tunnel syndrome, it is essential to seek medical attention for a prompt diagnosis.

How is Cervical Disc Herniation Diagnosed?

When a patient is presenting with pain in the neck following an accident, the treating physician will generally perform a comprehensive physical exam and a neurological examination. This will involve the assessment of the patient’s range of motion. The lateral flexion, left and right rotation, extension, and flexion may be affected by degeneration, spasms, and pain, depending on the severity of each, respectively.

The best modality for the assessment of cervical disc herniation and spinal cord compression is magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), as it may lead to findings such as spondylotic osteophytes, decreased signal intensity, and reduced disc height. The initial and inexpensive method for the evaluation of an osseous injury to the cervical spine is an X-ray as it may show osteophytes and reduced disc height in chronic cervical disc degeneration cases.

How is a Herniated Cervical Disc Treated?

Management of a cervical disc injury in the acute phase is generally composed of pain relief, rehabilitation, and surgical intervention. In the non-surgical aspect, pain management through epidural injections and oral anti-inflammatory agents are intended to decrease the severity of inflammation. This will allow the patient to undergo physical therapy with the goals of improving spinal biomechanics, strengthening the muscles, improving range of motion, and decreasing pain in the affected areas.

When there is no improvement with conservative management, surgical intervention may be necessary, particularly for acute disc herniation cases resulting in the most common type of incomplete spinal cord injury known as central cord syndrome. Indications for surgery are those cases involving six weeks to three months of non-surgical management of cervical degenerative disc disease or disc herniation in the cervical spine. Other indications for surgery may also include worsening neuropraxia or myelopathy.

What are the Complications of a Herniated Disc in the Cervical Spine?

In some rare cases, a disc herniation may result in the compression of the cauda equina and spinal canal. Surgical intervention in an emergency room may be necessary to prevent paralysis or permanent weakness. According to Mayo Clinic, it is essential for anyone experiencing any of the following to seek immediate medical care:

  • Bowel or bladder dysfunction may occur with cauda equina syndrome from the compression of the cauda equina, the bundle of nerve roots from the sacral and lumbar levels.
  • Saddle anesthesia may result in progressive numbness and loss of sensation in the area surrounding the rectum, back of the legs, and inner thighs.
  • Symptoms that may worsen and impact your daily routine through weakness, pain, and numbness.

Seeking medical treatment immediately after experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned above may result in a prompt diagnosis and intervention for an optimal outcome for a patient with a herniated cervical disc.

Can You Seek Compensation in a Personal Injury Case for an Accident?

When injuries are suffered in a motor vehicle collision, the at-fault party is generally liable for the harm their actions have caused. Their insurance company usually steps in to pay out bodily injury claims filed against their insured. While this would be the ideal situation for all injured parties, that does not necessarily play out in all personal injury cases. That is because insurance carriers may be unwilling to do what is right as they are focused on protecting their bottom line. To accomplish this, insurers often resort to defense tactics to get out of paying a claimant for damages related to their cervical disc injury sustained in the crash. What is most unfortunate about these situations is that the same may also occur in first-party insurance claims that are brought through uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage when it is proven that the other side has little to no liability coverage.

After a car wreck resulting in serious injuries, your best ally will be an attorney with years of experience handling cases like yours. Unlike the insurance company, your injury lawyer cares about helping you get your life back on track after a crash and recovering the compensation you need for medical bills, lost earnings, and other accident-related losses. A skilled attorney understands the wide array of impacts a traumatic injury may have and will stop at nothing to seek a fair financial recovery on your behalf. When you have the right lawyer handling your case, you can rest assured knowing that it is in good hands all while you focus on recovering from your injuries. For information on how to select the best attorney to represent you in your cervical disc injury case, watch this video.

Can a Personal Injury Case Be Affected by a Pre-Existing Condition?

A pre-existing condition is a health condition that existed prior to a motor vehicle collision. While an injured party is not generally entitled to financial recovery for a pre-existing condition, they may be compensated for aggravation of that past medical condition. The amount of compensation a claimant may be eligible to receive for an accident resulting in an exacerbation of a pre-existing condition will depend on the evidence that demonstrates the severity of that health condition and how the aggravation has affected their life after the incident. Failing to disclose a pre-existing condition such as degenerative disc disease may harm your credibility and put your injury case in jeopardy. That is why it is essential to be transparent with your lawyer by letting them know about any past health conditions. This will help your attorney determine the degree to which the incident worsened or aggravated any pre-existing conditions you had beforehand.

The insurance adjuster handling the bodily injury claim may often resort to a wide array of defense tactics as a way of devaluing or denying the case. One such strategy is to make the assertion that the claimant is seeking damages for a cervical disc injury that was a pre-existing condition and was not exacerbated by the incident in question. Fortunately, an experienced accident attorney will know the best way to counter such disputes from difficult insurance companies.

The types of evidence that may provide a strong basis for direct causation will vary based upon the circumstances of the personal injury case. These may include medical records from before and after the accident, photos of any visible trauma, and deposition or testimony from treating physicians and expert witnesses. An experienced attorney will review all relevant medical records to determine whether a cervical disc herniation was aggravated because of the incident. Clear and compelling evidence may play a pivotal role in the discovery phase and assist the cervical disc injury lawyer in obtaining a fair settlement in insurance negotiations or a favorable outcome at trial.

What is the Time Limit for Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit in California?

The state of California has deadlines on how much time a claimant must file a personal injury lawsuit after an accident if an insurance settlement is not accepted. Under the California Code of Civil Procedure Section 335.1, a lawsuit must be filed in civil court no later than two years from the date of the crash. Conversely, the statute may be reduced to as little as six months in those cases involving negligence on the part of a government entity. Refer to California Government Code Section 911.2 for additional information.

If the case is not filed within the applicable deadline, the case may be dismissed at the court’s discretion. This ultimately results in the loss of the right to seek damages. To successfully navigate the process of meeting filing criteria and deadlines that apply to personal injury cases in the state of California, an experienced accident attorney is necessary. The sooner you retain legal counsel, the more time your lawyer has to build a strong cervical disc herniation case for fair compensation on your behalf.

Contact a Cervical Disc Injury Attorney Today

In California and throughout the United States, motor vehicle collisions are a leading cause of traumatic injuries. When you have been hurt in a car accident caused by another driver, you may feel overwhelmed at the thought of what the future may be like when dealing with a cervical disc injury. You may be facing mounting medical expenses, extensive treatment making you miss out on the activities you love and lost time at work, changes in the family dynamic, and more.

At AutoAccident.com, we care about you, your goals, and recovering the compensation you need to move forward. Our legal team has decades of collective experience recovering fair compensation on behalf of our clients who have suffered injuries such as a herniated disc in the cervical spine. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can put our knowledge, skills, and resources to work for you and your injury case. We are available anytime to meet with you, go over the specifics of your case, and provide free, friendly advice on how to move forward in your unique situation.

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