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Posted on 08-02-2013

Cervical Radiculopathy following Baltimore Auto Accidents

In many of my past blog posts I have touched on topics of injuries associated with Baltimore Auto Accidents. One area that I have not spent much time on is the idea of cervical radiculopathy. In simple terms, radiculopathy is inflammation of a nerve root. Anytime the spine is stressed or compressed, such as in a Baltimore auto accident, there can be irritation to nerve roots. This is the case for the entire spine, but for the sake of this discussion, we will only be considering cervical, or neck, radiculopathy.

The nerve roots in the neck comprise all of the motor and sensory fibers that innervate the upper extremity. Incidentally, they also innervate some muscles in the neck and upper back. The motor fibers control motion in the upper extremity (which I activate as I type this blog post) while the sensory fibers convey sensation from the environment (such as heat, cold, pain, light tough vibration, pressure) to the brain.

Following trauma to the spine, such as that often experienced in Baltimore auto accidents, the nerve roots may become injured, manifesting as a myriad of symptoms. Most commonly patients present with neck pain along with numbness and/or tingling and/or weakness into the upper extremity on the affected side. Often times radiculopathy can be confirmed on physical examination and if need be, advanced imaging studies such as MRIs. Here is an example of a cervical radiculopathy due to a herniated disc as a result of an auto accident.

As part of the therapy for Baltimore auto accidents that I provide in my office, therapy usually involves heat, electric muscle stimulation, traction therapy, and if appropriate, chiropractic spinal manipulation. Most patients respond favorably within 6-12 weeks to conservative chiropractic therapy. Those that don't are referred to specialists for additional intervention. The key to recovery is quick intervention. That is, the longer a patient experiences radiculopathy the longer it takes for the symptoms to resolve.

If you, or anyone you know, has suffered a cervical radiculopathy as a result of a Baltimore auto accident and require Baltimore auto accident treatment, please contact Mid-Atlantic Spinal Rehab & Chiropractic at (443) 842-5500. We would be glad to help!

 

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