Radiculopathy: Common Spine Injury Related to Accidents


The spine is made up of multiple bones, known as vertebrae. The spinal cord goes through the center in the canal of these bones. The nerve roots travel to various parts of the body between the vertebrae as they split from the cord. It results in radiculopathy from compressed or pinched nerves. As well as, disc herniation. The most common cause of radiculopathy is car accidents because a sudden crash can cause permanent trauma to the neck.

What Is Radiculopathy?

Radiculopathy, also known as a pinched nerve. Occurs when the nerve root becomes pinched in the spinal column. Radiculopathy occurs when the bone, muscles, cartilage, or tissues around the spine compress a nerve root. The pinching can occur in different parts of the spine, such as the lumbar, cervical, or thoracic. The symptoms of radiculopathy vary according to the location, but the most common signs are tingling, numbness, pain, and weakness. The pain radiated by these symptoms is known as radiculopathy.

Types of Radiculopathy

Cervical Radiculopathy

Cervical radiculopathy causes pain and neurological symptoms that can result from any situation that irritates a nerve located in the thoracic, cervical, or lumbar spine. Deterioration of the cervical spine can cause several conditions that can subsequently result in neurological anomalies. Usually, dividing these problems between issues that originate from compressed nerves and issues that originate in the neck.

Lumbar Radiculopathy

Lumbar radiculopathy causes chronic pain that occurs in the legs and the lower back. Compression or pinching of the nerve roots that send signals throughout the parts of the body and damage to the lower part of the spine can cause extreme numbness and weakness.

Acute trauma suffered during a car accident can lead to very significant pathology, such as ligaments, discs, muscles, and the nerves moving through the spine from the neck to the lower back.

Thoracic Radiculopathy

Thoracic radiculopathy originates in the thoracic area of the spine (upper back). When the nerve roots become compressed or pinched. The thoracic is the least common area of the spine for radiculopathy. The symptoms include pain and numbness that can move up to the front of the body.

Car Accidents and Spine Injuries

The deterioration of the spine does not necessarily mean that a car accident played a role in it. For instance, when a person gets old, the spine generally starts to deteriorate. However, sometimes an impact from a relatively minimal accident can lead to excessive pressure on the spine. The added pressure on the spine can result in a severe spinal injury, such as a herniated disc. Disc herniation occurs when the external casing of the disc breaks and causes the center to swell out. Disc herniation can result in various spinal conditions.

Radiculopathy is frequently caused by car accidents due to the extreme force exerted on the spine. The treat, although, is expensive but can be quite effective to reduce the symptoms and heal the spine. Through the expert guidance and aid of a professional lawyer, you will be able to recover the costs of lost wages and medical treatment and even receive the specified compensation for the pain that you endured during the wreck.

How Does it Result From a Car Accident?

At the time of a car accident, the body thrashes around in different directions at great speed and with high force. Two of the most common injuries resulting from a car accident are spinal injury and whiplash. Sideswipe or head-on collisions are more likely to cause radiculopathy. However, a herniated disc is usually the main cause.

The spinal discs have the ability to absorb shock and trauma so they help protect the spine. Between each vertebra is a disc. Intense force or shock can rupture or tear the resilient outer layer of the discs. This compromises its ability to protect the spine. Hence, the disc herniates and puts pressure on the spinal nerves, resulting in discomfort and radiculopathy.

When involved in any form of vehicle accident, it is important to watch out for the signs and symptoms of radiculopathy. And get medical attention. It is also essential to contact the police and a car accident lawyer at your earliest to get the required assistance and guidance related to the matter.

How Can You Prove that Radiculopathy Was Caused By a Car Accident?

The best way to prove that radiculopathy resulted from a car accident is to get diagnostic imaging, such as MRI or X-ray, as soon as possible after the incident. An experienced doctor can quickly identify the underlying cause of the pinched nerve or herniated disc. Be sure to get immediate medical attention because any delay will make it difficult to prove the cause of radiculopathy.

Types of Damages You Can Receive

If you sustained injuries due to the negligence of the other party, you have the legal right to receive compensation in the form of damages. The amount of damages you can seek depends on the type of medical treatment you receive, the severity of the injuries, and other underlying factors.

The following damages are typically included in case of radiculopathy resulting from a car accident:

  • Disability
  • Medical expenses (including imaging tests)
  • Lost income
  • Lost future earnings
  • Pain and suffering

Don’t forget to keep proof of medical treatment and other relevant documents as they will be required by your lawyer.


If you have suffered from severe injuries, such as radiculopathy, at the time of an accident, it is important to get immediate medical treatment and seek the help of an expert auto accident attorney. The treatments that you will require depend on the severity of the injury and your personal condition. In most cases, the body usually heals on its own with intense care and physical therapy. Your doctor may, however, prescribe oral medication to decrease inflammation and provide instant pain relief.

Written by SpiritOne

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