Herniated discs are excruciating injuries, and if they aren't treated properly, they can become permanent injuries.
If someone's negligence, like an at-fault driver, caused or aggravated your herniated disc, you need to get compensated fairly for your medical care and other damages.
At-fault parties must be held accountable for their actions.
Victims of accidents who suffer from herniated discs can receive considerable settlement amounts.
The therapy and rehabilitation required to repair a ruptured or herniated disc can be extensive and extremely expensive.
In the article below, we will discuss herniated disc settlements and how to treat your herniated disc.
Table Of Contents
- What's A Herniated Disc?
- How Does Herniated Disc Occur in A Car Accident?
- What's The Average Herniated Disc Settlement Amount?
- Determining The Value Of Your Case
- Pre-Existing Disc Injuries
- How Are Spinal Disc Herniation Injuries Treated?
- How A Chiropractor Can Help With A Herniated Disc
- Visit A Chiropractor Today
What's A Herniated Disc?
A herniated disc is an injury to the spinal column that occurs when a disc in your spine ruptures.
When the disc ruptures, the jelly-like middle emits out and causes irritation to nearby nerves.
A herniated disc can be located in the lower back, mid-back (thoracic spine), or neck (cervical spine).
The symptoms of a severe disc herniation can be overwhelming.
The symptoms you experience will vary depending on the severity of the injury, whether or not you have a pre-existing condition, and which part and how much of the spine was affected.
Common symptoms of a disc herniation include:
- Neck pain
- Back pain
- Arm or leg pain
Many spinal injury victims also suffer significant neurological damage due to their accidents.
These symptoms can range from partial paraplegia to total paralysis or tetraplegia.
Unfortunately, some accident victims are left with lifelong struggles such as pain, treatment, physical therapy, and requiring personal care.
Subsequently, injuries to the spine can lead to more health issues and a reduction in overall quality of life.
If a herniated disc puts pressure on the nerves at the base of the spine, it can cause severe pain, numbness, or weakness.
Other potential complications are:
- Bladder dysfunction
- Bowel dysfunction
- Saddle anesthesia
Saddle anesthesia is the loss of sensation on the backs of the legs, the inner thighs, lower buttocks, genital and rectal areas.
An accident victim that experiences these complications typically requires emergency surgery to avoid permanent damage.
How Does Herniated Disc Occur in A Car Accident?
Herniated discs are also referred to as ruptured discs or slipped discs.
If you're involved in a car accident, the impact of the collision can cause the vertebrae to become maladjusted, creating extreme pain as they compress the tender nerves in the spine.
A herniated disc is pushed outside of the spine, pinching the nerves and causing extreme pain and sometimes numbness.
There are several ways a traumatic car accident can cause back injuries like herniated discs.
This is why it's essential to undergo a physical examination from an accident doctor like a chiropractor after your car accident and document all your injuries. This, in turn, will allow a personal injury lawyer to build a better case and help increase the settlement value for your case against the insurance companies.
What's The Average Herniated Disc Settlement Amount?
The national average value of a herniated disc injury case is approximately $360,000.
How much someone receives in a settlement will depend on the intensity of their symptoms, there is no herniated disc settlement calculator that can give you an exact answer.
The settlement amount for a herniated disc injury can vary greatly depending on the severity of the injury, the amount of medical treatment required, and the number of lost wages.
But the average settlement amount does virtually nothing for you, particularly in herniated disc cases.
Having a herniated disc from an accident can mean many different things.
It could make you a little weak when you lift something heavy, or it could be a debilitating injury with chronic pain that destroys your life.
Even with a similar injury, a fair settlement for one person may not be appropriate for the next person.
Even though two herniated disc injuries may look the same on an MRI, they can have drastically different effects on two people.
So don't worry about average values. They don't have real meaning.
Instead, work with personal injury lawyers who can accurately estimate the value of your case and won't charge you large fees.
Determining the Value of Your Case
There are some specific things you should think about when trying to put a dollar amount on a herniated disc claim.
Here are a few:
- Surgeries to repair a cervical disc injury can cost more than $35,000 for uninsured patients. Some repairs include lumbar fusion surgery, laminectomy, and anterior cervical discectomy that require ongoing medical treatment.
- Unfortunately, bed rest and long-term time away from work are often needed for healing some herniated disks. Those who suffer from such conditions can experience painful symptoms such as cervical spine damage, rotator cuff injury and pain, disc herniation, and decompression.
- When repairing herniated disks, there is usually permanent scarring along with the incision area from the operation.
- Post-surgery, one of the lingering effects of a herniated disk can be stiffness and restricted motion in the region that was treated.
- Recovery times for herniated disk surgeries can vary significantly depending on a person's overall health and the details of the operation, but they may take several weeks or months. A lengthy recovery time often makes life less enjoyable.
Some additional questions about the value of your case:
How much does a herniated disc settlement payout for lost wages?
The amount of a settlement for lost wages in a lawsuit involving a herniated disc is difficult to establish because it will depend on a variety of factors such as the severity of the injury, the length of time the individual was unable to work, and the individual's income and job status. Age, level of education, and future employment opportunities are some more aspects that might be taken into account.
The goal of a settlement in a lawsuit involving personal injury is, in most cases, to provide financial compensation to the party who has been hurt for the losses they have incurred as a direct result of the accident.
Expenses incurred out of pocket can include things like medical bills, lost wages, and other other fees. In addition to this, it may include compensation for the plaintiff's mental anguish, diminished quality of life, and other intangible losses.
In a case involving a herniated disc, it is essential to meticulously document all of the damages that have been sustained as a direct result of the injury in order to arrive at an appropriate amount for the settlement.
This may include pay stubs, medical bills, or any other paperwork that supports a claim for lost income. It may also be beneficial to speak with a personal injury lawyer, who can assist with evaluating the case and negotiating a reasonable settlement with the other party or their insurance company.
If you consult with a personal injury lawyer, you may find that you save both time and money.
How is pain and suffering factored into herniated disc settlement amounts?
In personal injury lawsuits, pain and suffering damages compensate the injured party for physical and mental discomfort. This includes bodily agony, mental misery, and life dissatisfaction.
The amount of pain and suffering damages in a herniated disc case depends on the injury's severity and influence on the individual's quality of life.
Some factors in evaluating pain and suffering include:
- More serious injuries are more painful and may result in higher pain-and-suffering damages.
- The duration of the pain may be considered for calculating damages.
- Daily impact: The injury's impact on the victim's capacity to participate in normal activities may be considered when calculating damages.
- Mental health: Depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues may be considered when calculating damages.
Pain and suffering damages are harder to measure than medical bills or lost pay. Personal injury lawyers can help evaluate the case and negotiate a fair payment with the opposing party or their insurer.
How much does a herniated disc settlement payout for loss of consortium?
Loss of consortium is a type of harm designed to recompense a spouse or other close family member for the victim's loss of companionship, support, and other intangible benefits as a result of the accident. It is often regarded as a sort of non-economic damage because there is no quantifiable money loss.
The amount of a settlement for loss of consortium in a herniated disc case will be determined by the facts of the case and the impact the injury has had on the injured party's relationship with a family member.
The following variables may be considered in establishing the number of damages for loss of consortium:
- The nature of the injured party's relationship with a family member: A more personal connection may result in greater compensation for the loss of consortium.
- The extent to which the family member's capacity to enjoy the relationship has been impaired by the injury: If the injury has adversely harmed a family member's capacity to enjoy the relationship, this may be considered for calculating damages.
- The duration of the impact: If the impact of the harm is projected to be long-lasting, this may be included when calculating damages.
Losses for loss of consortium are often more difficult to measure than other types of damages, such as medical expenditures or lost wages. As a result, it may be beneficial to speak with a personal injury lawyer, who can help evaluate the case and negotiate a fair settlement with the other party or their insurance company.
Pre-Existing Disc Injuries
Trying to handle your compensation case without legal representation could result in having your claim denied outright.
The claims adjuster will try to divert responsibility from the at-fault driver to the victim.
The insurance company might claim you had a pre-existing disc injury.
This will often prevent them from seeking compensation for the harm caused by the accident.
Without proper representation, this can dissuade the victim from continuing their lawsuit.
Your medical history might also reveal long-term degenerative conditions like spondylolisthesis, spinal stenosis, or osteoarthritis that pre-date the accident.
But even if you have a pre-existing herniated disc or other degenerative spinal conditions still has a right to compensation for the accident injuries and other non-economic damages.
Your attorney should make it clear that the new injury is separate from any prior herniated disc or other degenerative back issues you may have if you're dealing with pre-existing conditions.
Your attorney will demonstrate how the collision you experienced due to another driver's carelessness has caused your discomfort to increase greatly, which wouldn't have happened if you had not been part of the crash.
What are the Treatment Options for Spinal Disc Herniation Injuries?
When it comes to spinal injuries, only qualified medical practitioners and specialists can provide the necessary care.
In order to diagnose the type and severity of your injury, your doctor will do a full exam.
This might require medical testing like:
- CT scan
- Nerve conduction testing
- Electromyography (EMG)
Once your testing is completed, your doctor will design an appropriate treatment plan for your disc injuries.
Pain management helps victims cope with their symptoms.
This often includes prescription pain medication like opioids, muscle relaxers, and steroid injections.
However, these medications do not improve the disc herniation itself.
Sometimes physical therapy isn't enough to reverse the damage to the spine, and the only way to repair a damaged disc is through surgery.
How A Chiropractor Can Help With A Herniated Disc
Car accident chiropractors are skilled at treating herniated discs because of their ability to understand the overall mobility and function of the body.
The first thing they will do is assess the extent of your herniated disc's damage.
They will evaluate the overall health of your spine, look into your medical history, and conduct a physical exam.
They can order diagnostic tests if necessary.
Once your chiropractor determines you are a good fit for spinal manipulation, they will design a treatment plan specific to your condition and needs.
This plan may include the flexion-distraction technique, which is a gentle and pain-free procedure, making it an excellent option for patients who suffer from severe pain.
It can move the herniated disc away from the affected nerve, alleviating your symptoms.
Your chiropractor may also use pelvic blocking treatments.
These treatments utilize cushioned wedges specifically crafted for chiropractic use.
Your chiropractor will put these wedges under both sides of your pelvis, naturally drawing away your herniated disc from the affected nerve.
Visit A Chiropractor Today
Chiropractic care is a wonderful alternative for issues with the musculoskeletal system, like herniated discs.
No matter what symptoms you're experiencing, chiropractic care may be right for you.
Chiropractic treatment for your spine and related areas like your neck or back can be expertly treated by experienced chiropractors with little to no risk to you.
Arrowhead Clinic has over 40 years of experience serving communities throughout Georgia with specialized treatment for auto accident victims dealing with herniated discs.
Arrowhead Clinic will diagnose your symptoms and design a treatment plan to keep them from returning or becoming worse.
If someone else's negligence caused your accident, we can also refer you to local personal injury attorneys who can help you receive the compensation you deserve from the insurance company.
Click the button below for your free consultation and get the treatment you deserve.