Back Injury FAQs
Addressing Your Legal Concerns after a Serious Back Injury
The human back is a very complex network of muscles, tendons, ligaments, and bones. Because it is so complex, it can sustain trauma and injuries in many ways. If you have suffered back injuries in an accident, you might need compensation to cover medical and other expenses. At Alpert Schreyer, our Maryland back injury attorneys have experience with all types of cases, and we know what you need to prove to receive compensation. Please contact us for more information about your specific case today.
What are the different types of back injuries you see?
Our clients have suffered many types of injuries, including:
- Sprains. If a ligament connecting two bones is stretched or torn, you can suffer a sprain. In severe cases, the ligament can shear completely off.
- Strains. Tears or stretching of a tendon can result in a strain. Tendons connect muscle to bone.
- Nerve damage. Any pressure on a nerve can cause constant pain. If you suffer a sprain or strain, then swelling could lead to nerve damage. Other causes include pieces of bone pushing up against a nerve.
- Fractured ribs. Broken ribs can be very painful and can make it hard to breathe deeply. Many people can develop pneumonia as a complication.
- Cracked vertebrae. Vertebrae protect the spinal cord from damage. Any trauma can fracture a vertebra, leading to serious complications.
- Herniated disc. Jelly-like pads in between the vertebrae provide cushioning. However, trauma can dislodge the discs and cause them to push up against the spinal cord, leading to pain and other complications.
- Ruptured disc. The disk might tear open during an accident, which can lead to pain, as the disc can no longer offer the necessary cushion.
- Spinal cord injury. Electrical signals travel the spinal cord to connect the brain to the remainder of the body. Any tearing, bruising, crushing, cutting, or shredding can result in spinal cord damage and total or partial paralysis.
All back injuries are serious and require immediate medical attention. After an accident, it is wise to go to the hospital or schedule an appointment with your doctor. Make sure to explain you were in an accident and identify your symptoms.
How do your clients suffer back injuries?
At Alpert Schreyer, our clients sustain back injuries in all kinds of accidents. Some of the more common include:
- Car accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Slip and falls
- Workplace injuries
- Construction accidents
Usually, the accident either results in direct trauma to the back or the person wrenches the back while trying to avoid trauma or an impact.
How does a doctor diagnose a back injury?
You might be feeling back pain but not know exactly what is wrong. This is common. Because the back is so complex, any number of things could be causing your pain. Helpfully, you don’t need to self-diagnose but can instead visit the hospital for diagnostic testing.
When you visit a doctor, he or she will probably ask you how the injury occurred and ask where you are feeling pain. The doctor might also order an imaging test to diagnose your injury, such as:
- CT scans
- SPECT (Single-Photon Emission Computerized Tomography)
How will a doctor treat my back injury?
Treatment options vary, depending on the type of injury and its seriousness. For example, a mild or moderate sprain or strain might only require rest, ice, elevation, and a compression garment for a few weeks before swelling reduces and the ligament or tendon heals. You can also use over-the-counter painkillers to manage your discomfort.
Severe sprains or strains, by contrast, could require surgery. Surgery has its own complications you should ask your doctor about, such as the risk of infection or anesthesia problems. Surgery could also keep you out of work for much longer.
If you suffer damage to your vertebrae, different treatments are available:
- Discectomy: a doctor can remove the damaged portion of your herniated disc.
- Artificial disc implant: a doctor replaces your damaged disc with an artificial one.
- Fusion: two vertebrae are fused together to limit movement and stop pain.
- Laminectomy: a surgeon removes bone to relieve pressure.
- Vertebroplasty: a surgeon injects bone into a fractured vertebra to strengthen it.
Recovery time varies after surgery, but some patients will need physical therapy to help strengthen their backs.
What compensation can I receive for a back injury?
Back injuries are quite expensive to treat, so you should learn whether you can receive money to pay for all medical bills. This will include the cost of surgery, doctor visits, prescription drugs, rehabilitation, and any other medical expense you can trace to the accident.
If your back injury prevents you from working, then you may be able to receive money to replace lost wages. Many clients need to take months off from work as they recover, so lost wages are necessary to continue to pay bills. If you suffer a permanent injury—such as paralysis—then you can receive compensation to cover future medical care and future lost wages, which can be considerable.
Our clients can also receive compensation for the pain and suffering they have endured. The amount of compensation will vary depending on the circumstances. For example, your back injury might be permanent and leave you in chronic pain. If so, you can receive much more in pain and suffering damages than if your sprain heals within a couple of months.
Because the amount of compensation you can receive varies, make sure to meet with a Maryland back injury lawyer for more information.
Why should I hire you when I can negotiate a settlement myself?
An insurance company would like nothing better than for you to represent yourself. However, the negotiation process is complex, and few injured victims have the tools and resources to do the following:
- Accurately determine the monetary value of their injuries
- Fully document their injuries, including pain and suffering
- Reject a lowball offer and negotiate effectively with an insurance company
- Participate in mediation meaningfully
- Draft a settlement agreement that protects their rights
Instead, an experienced back injury attorney in Maryland is often necessary to give yourself the best chance of receiving maximum compensation.
Speak With a Maryland Back Injury Lawyer Today
Have you hurt your back in an accident? Are you in pain and not sure what to do? If so, we may be able to help. Alpert Schreyer, LLC, is a leading law firm serving Maryland. Our attorneys represent clients with injuries from all kinds of accidents, and we can work to obtain compensation on your behalf.
Please call us today. Many people do not know where to turn after an accident, and we promise to offer a caring ear. You can schedule a free case evaluation by calling (844) 632-7274 or send us an online contact form.