By: Whalen Hersh
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What is a Disc Replacement Following a Car Accident?
Herniated discs can occur as a result of an injury sustained in a car crash when sudden excessive pressure is placed on the spine. Our vertebral discs act as the shock absorbers of the spinal system, ensuring that bone doesn’t rub against bone, allowing our backs to be flexible without causing pain. Vertebral discs are made up of two substances; an outer layer of tough, fibrous material which houses an inner gel-like layer. When a disc becomes ruptured, or herniated, this means that there is a break in the outer protective layer which allows a portion of the inner layer to protrude, pushing out into the spinal channel and pressing against spinal nerves. This pressure produces severe back, neck, leg pain and possible hand pain. The severe forces which occur in a motor vehicle accident are known to cause flexion/extension injuries and twisting injuries and can lead to immediate pain. Sometimes the disc doesn’t herniate immediately, but rather pain sets in after a few days or weeks when the inner layer of the disc finally leaks out of the damaged exterior layer. This can occur over time and your symptoms can slowly develop. If you experience sudden pain following a car accident or in the ensuing days or weeks, you should seek immediate medical attention and contact a personal injury attorney.
What is a disc replacement?
Disc replacement is a procedure where an artificial disc is placed in the intervertebral space after the injured disc has been removed. This surgery is sometimes done as an alternative to a spinal fusion. Some studies show better outcomes in disc replacements, opposed to spinal fusions, where the patient doesn’t have any identifiable spinal instability. Both procedures should be discussed with your surgeon.
What can someone expect during the process?
A surgeon will operate on your spine from the front, going in through the abdomen or neck to access the area where the artificial disc will be placed. Once the area is cleared and the new disc is in place, blood vessels and soft tissues are replaced in their original position and the incision is closed. A vascular surgeon can often assist during this procedure.
What does recovery time look like?
After surgery, spinal flexibility and range of motion should be restored, and pain should be abated. Most patients need to remain in the hospital for a few days following this surgery. Further recovery will happen over the next four to six weeks, with full recovery occurring in approximately around two to three months as the spine adjusts to the implanted device and the body recovers from surgery. A serious back or neck injury caused by a motor vehicle accident can lead to disc replacement surgery. This situation can lead to potential future inability to work and loss of significant income. This could affect your ability to provide for your family. That’s why it’s imperative that you secure the best legal representation possible. A spinal injury case requiring a disc replacement should be handled by an experienced personal injury attorney.
Past Case Results
Whalen Hersh is proud to be one of America’s Top 100 Attorneys, 5280 Top Attorneys in Colorado, Top 100 Trial Lawyers, and Super Lawyers. If you’ve been involved in a car accident and suffered injury requiring disc replacement, contact our firm of experienced personal injury lawyers in Denver and Colorado Springs for proper legal representation. We have successfully represented many car accident victims over the years, securing millions in personal injury case settlements. Our personal injury attorneys are not afraid to take on the large insurance companies on your behalf to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation confidential consultation to discuss all your legal options.
You can reach our Denver attorneys at (720) 307-2666. Our offices are located in the Denver Tech Center at 7955 East Arapahoe Court, Suite 2375, Centennial, CO 80112, and our Colorado Springs office is in the Alamo Corporate Center, conveniently located at 102 S. Tejon Street, Suite 1100, (719) 644-7000. We look forward to working with you.