The majority of us will experience minor neck pain on occasion, but it is typically not something to be concerned about, and it often resolves on its own. Depending on the cause of the neck pain and the extent of the injury, many patients are offered non-surgical options for treating their pain. Some of these options can include radio frequency ablation, nerve root blocks, epidural steroid injections, facet joint blocks, and other options. Severe neck pain, however, may not respond to these types of treatments. Oftentimes, this type of pain results from a serious accident, such as a car accident. In some types of car accidents, passengers may sustain severe whiplash injuries, which can cause serious neck pain and may possibly result in the need for neck surgery.
The neck is made up of the following different areas and parts, all of which can result in severe neck pain if injured, potentially resulting in the need for neck surgery:
Car accidents and other serious incidents that put a tremendous amount of force and pressure on the neck can also cause cervical fractures, which may also require surgery if the fracture is severe. In addition to severe neck pain, other signs of cervical fractures include numbness, tenderness at the site of the fracture, and tissue swelling around the fracture. Your doctor will likely make a final diagnosis through various imaging tests, such as MRI scans and X-rays.
If cervical fractures are determined to be severe enough, your doctor may recommend neck surgery. This requires the removal of any bone spurs, as well as all or a portion of the disk. Once the disk is removed, the vertebrae may be fused to repair the fracture. Metal plates may be needed for additional stability, and your surgeon will enlarge the space between the vertebrae and fill in this space with bone graft. After this type of surgery, you may feel a complete or partial relief of pain and pressure. However, you may also notice some restricted movement.
The recovery time after neck surgery may vary for each patient and may require physical therapy. Patients can typically expect to spend a few days in the hospital following the surgery, where they may also have a drainage tube in their neck, which will be removed within a day or two after their operation. Many patients need to wear a neck brace following their procedure, and this could be required for up to three months, but will depend on the extent of your injury and surgery. All in all, it usually takes several months to several years for patients to recover from neck surgery.
Whether or not you’re uncertain about having neck surgery to alleviate your pain, it can be a good idea to seek out a second (or even a third) opinion. This gives you the opportunity to fully weigh all of the advantages and disadvantages; most surgeries carry some risk, after all. However, getting multiple opinions from different doctors may give you the chance to make a more informed decision. Even if you are confident that neck surgery is the right solution for you, it is not always necessary to go with the first doctor who recommends the operation. Compare your different options and choose a surgeon whose skills and reputation you’re confident in. After all, having surgery is a big decision, and you’ll want to aim for the best possible outcome.
Many accident victims sustain neck injuries that are serious enough to require surgery. If another party’s negligent actions are responsible for your injuries and need for surgery, you may be pursuing monetary compensation in a personal injury lawsuit. Even if you and your attorney are confident that the case will settle for a fair amount, the challenge is usually the fact that personal injury lawsuits, in general, tend to go through a time-consuming process. Because plaintiffs frequently rely on these lawsuit settlements to pay for medical procedures that have resulted directly from an accident, like neck surgery, they may just put off their recommended treatments until receiving settlement money.
Other times, plaintiffs may turn to less-than-ideal alternatives to take care of costly neck surgery, such as loans and credit cards. However, with the incurred interest that accumulates until you receive settlement money and pay it off, it can easily be an expensive mistake to go down this route. Delaying neck surgery can also be a bad idea, and may result in additional problems later on.
Instead of turning to hasty financial decisions or enduring the pain of a severe neck injury by putting off your recommended course of treatment, consider the many benefits of working with USClaims by taking advantage of our pre-settlement funding services. Contact USClaims today to learn how pre-settlement funding, or a lawsuit advance, may be able to help you get money sooner.