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Posted on 01-20-2014

Croft Guidelines for Whiplash Treatment in Baltimore, MD

As a Chiropractor that spends many hours a week treating patients involved in Baltimore car accidents resulting in whiplash, I often get asked how long any given patient should expect to take to recover from their injuries. Asked another way, patients often want to know how long they should expect to need treatment for their injuries. It is a fair question, since many patients end of missing time from work and leisure activities in order to present for treatment. Unfortunately there is no simple answer to that question. As we have seen in past blog posts, every patient undergoes unique loading mechanisms during Baltimore auto accidents and has different relative risks of injury. As such, it should stand to reason that some patients might not get hurt at all, while others can suffer with debilitating injuries that take weeks or months to heal, while others never fully heal.

Fortunately there is a professionally accepted standard for treatment of whiplash patients that helps to grade the severity of the patient's presentation. These guidelines are then useful in predicting how long a patient should be under care in order to reach maximum therapeutic benefit (or referred to as maximum medical improvement, MMI).

Keep in mind a few things here:

1) A patient's ability to return to work, depending on what they do for a living, can occur prior to their being "healed." I often release patients to work at either light duty or even full duty even while they are having pain.

2) Patients that feel better and have no pain are still healing even after I dismiss them from care. The healing process takes months to years for new connective tissue to effectively replace old, torn, injured tissue. This is why we see patients involved in multiple auto accidents often having more severe symptoms if their second crash occurs in quick succession to the first.

3) Not every patient fits into this guideline. Some patients can be outliers to this guidelines and may require MORE or LESS care, depending on their specific health characteristics and comorbid conditions.

For a link to the croft guidelines, click here.

In future blog posts I will discuss more in depth the different classifications associated with the croft guidelines and which classifications usually present in a chiropractic office.

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

Dr. Gulitz

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