Yes. Bulging discs are a common type of back injury caused by car accidents. If you’re an accident, you could suffer a bulging disc for the first time, or an existing bulging disc can be made worse. They are particularly common in rear-end collisions.
Bulging discs can be painful on their own, and they can also lead to a herniated disc, which tends to be much more painful. They can be treated, but treatment often involves regulating or managing the condition rather than attempting to correct it.
How does a car accident cause a bulging disc?
To understand how car accidents cause them, it helps to know how the spine is built. The structure of the spine consists of two key components:
- The individual vertebrae, made of bone; and
- The discs. Discs sit between vertebrae and act as cushions. They are made of cartilage. They allow the back to flex and turn—but only if they are all in proper working order.
Unfortunately, car accidents often put extreme force on the spine—often very suddenly. For example, if you come to a sudden stop you’ll be thrown forward, bending and extending your spine. This can happen when you run into something or get hit from behind. And side-impact accidents, while less common, can cause your spine to turn or flex in ways it isn’t designed to do. Any of these impacts can put strain on the discs, which are softer than bone. The resulting damage can cause the cartilage of a disc to “bulge” out from between two vertebrae.
This can manifest in several ways:
- It may cause pain, especially when moving in certain ways, although bulging discs are often painless at first.
- It may take time for symptoms to develop and become painful—even months.
- A bulging disc is likely to suffer additional strain if not managed, and is at risk of herniating. Herniated discs are more painful and even more serious.
Can I get insurance money for a bulging disc?
Yes. If the bulging disc was caused by your car accident, it is covered by your accident claim. The same is usually true of any new treatment for an existing back condition that gets aggravated by an accident. However, insurers will look for ways to turn down your claim. Some tactics they use include:
- Claiming you already had the condition before the accident
- Disputing whether you really have a back injury
- Disputing how extensive or serious your condition is, or what treatment you really need
- Settling your claim quickly before the slow-acting symptoms of a bulging disc become noticeable
The best way to get the money you need is to talk to a lawyer as soon after the accident as possible.
Talk to an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer for Free
Don’t let the insurance company deny you money that’s your right—or leave you with the bill for a serious back injury. Let us help. We will give you a FREE consultation and help you understand your claim and how to win. Call us at (404) 341-6555 or fill out the form to the right to get your free consultation today.