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Posted on 02-16-2015

More on Types of Intervertebral Disc Injuries Following Baltimore Car Accidents

This is the final installment of my blog series on types of intervertebral disc injuries following Baltimore car accidents. We have already discussed disc bulges, disc protrusions, and disc extrusions to date.

The final type of disc injury that we see in Baltimore car accidents is a disc sequestration. It is also known as a "sequestered disc" or "free fragment." This is a subtype of disc extrusions where the disc material has lost continuity with its disc of origin and has broken free entirely.

This free fragment or sequestered fragment can migrate, or travel, once it has broken free. The migration occurs in the neural canal and can lead to caudal or cephalic migration of the disc material. This can complicate matters clinically, as patient's symptoms may wax and wane without a predictable pattern as the sequestered disc fragment moves and impacts different neural structures.

Out of all of the disc injuries we have discussed thus far, a sequestered disc fragment is usually the most clinically significant. Additionally, these types of injuries usually do not respond well to chiropractic care and/or physical therapy. Often times these injuries need to be referred to an orthopedic surgeon so that the free fragments can be removed surgically. On the bright side, once the sequestered fragment is removed a patient usually feels tremendous relief of their clinical condition.

As with the other types of disc injuries following Baltimore car accidents, the most important thing is an appropriate diagnosis. These diagnoses can only be made utilizing MRI. If you are treating for a Baltimore auto accident injury and you are not feeling any improvement after approximately four to six weeks, you should have your provider order an MRI. Often times an MRI can help determine the structure of spinal intervertebral discs and can help lead to a more appropriate course of treatment.

If you, or someone you know, is suffering from an intervertebral disc injury due to a Baltimore auto accident, contact Mid-Atlantic Spinal Rehab & Chiropractic at (443) 842-5500.

Dr. Gulitz

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