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Anatomy of neck injuries from auto accidents

Missouri auto accidents are responsible for thousands of neck injuries every year. Neck injuries are one of the most common injuries sustained in an automobile accident. When seated in an automobile, the neck and head have little support when subjected to the forces of an accident. While a seatbelt provides limited protection, the head and neck are able to whip forward, backward, and side-to-side, making the head and neck extremely susceptible to injury.

There are countless neck injuries that may occur during a motor vehicle accident. These injuries may include:

  1. Whiplash;

  2. Herniated cervical discs;
  3. Protruding cervical discs;
  4. Bulging cervical discs;
  5. Tendon or ligament tears;
  6. Nerve damage;
  7. Neck breaks and fractures;
  8. Cervical dislocation; and
  9. Spinal cord injuries.

The neck, comprising the top of the spinal column, contains vast networks of nerves, ligaments, and tendons. These networks are responsible for the operation of many parts of the human body. A disruption of any portion of these networks can have devastating effects on the entire body. Injuries to the neck can cause paralysis and even death. Neck injuries should be treated immediately to ensure the best chance of recovery.

Neck injuries sustained in accidents vary greatly. Due to the multiple types of neck injuries, treatment varies as well. Conservative treatment may include:

  1. Medication;
  2. Physical therapy;
  3. Pain injections;
  4. Exercise routines;
  5. Chiropractic treatment; and
  6. Various other non-invasive treatments.

More serious neck injures such as disc protrusions, cervical dislocations, and fractures, may require surgery to repair the condition. These surgeries may include:

  1. Discectomy;
  2. Cervical fusion; and
  3. Other surgical repair.

Injuries to the neck can cause devastating problems. It is important to remember that following a neck injury, you should not move until a medical professional is able to examine the affected area. Movement of the neck following an accident can turn minor injuries into severe life-altering problems if not handled properly.