After a car accident, you may start experiencing back pain intense enough that it interferes with your daily life. This pain may be a symptom of spinal stenosis, a medical condition that some people suffer from after a car accident which puts pressure on the spinal cord and the nerves within the spine. Spinal stenosis manifests itself in two ways. Primary stenosis is when a patient is born with the condition, but it doesn’t become an issue until later in life. Acquired stenosis is when the condition occurs through natural aging, disease, or an external injury. Spinal stenosis occurs when the spinal canal – which is what holds the spinal cord with the accompanying nerves – is narrowed. The narrowing effect risks compressing the spinal cord, pinching nerve roots, and sending pain signals throughout the body. The pain typically manifests itself within the neck and lower back.
Beyond experiencing back pain after your car accident, other spinal stenosis symptoms can include pain in the neck, arm, hand, or shoulder, leg weakness, trouble balancing when walking, trouble with controlling your bowels or bladder, and an overall lack of coordination.
There are several treatment options for spinal stenosis that don’t immediately involve a surgery. Surgery for your back pain is a big step and should be considered as a last resort after all other noninvasive methods appear to have failed. Typically, those who are trying to relieve their back pain from spinal stenosis take part in activities such as:
If these more conservative methods do not appear to relieve your back pain, then a physician may be more inclined to recommend surgery. The kind of surgery you undergo for your spinal stenosis will depend on factors such as where the pain is located and whether pinched nerves are the primary cause of your back pain. Regardless of whether you feel pain or not after your accident, it is always important to set an appointment with a doctor right away. Not all injuries after car accidents have obvious symptoms, and allowing them to linger puts you at risk for worse conditions in the long term. Contact Garden State Pain at one of our New Jersey offices today to schedule an appointment and assess the cause of your back pain.