Car accidents can place severe stress on the spine, leading to many different kinds of spinal trauma, such as spinal stenosis. Spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal canal, which can occur from impacts, disc herniations, or bone spurs. This narrowing often places pressure on the nerve roots causing intense, debilitating pain in the back, legs, or buttocks. If you are suffering from spinal stenosis from a car accident, you may also experience:
- Muscle weakness
- Bladder and bowel issues
What treatment might I need for spinal stenosis?
The treatment required will depend largely on the severity of the stenosis. For stenosis that is less severe, you may need:
- Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
- Muscle relaxers
- Physical therapy
If the treatments above do not work or if your stenosis is affecting your ability to walk or causing issues with bowel or bladder function, you may need surgery to widen the spinal canal and relieve nerve pressure. You have a few different choices for surgical intervention:
- Laminotomy: removes part of the lamina (back portion of the vertebra causing issues)
- Laminoplasty: (only for stenosis affecting the neck): creates a “hinge” and opens the lamina to relieve pressure
- Laminectomy: removes the entire lamina and may join it with other vertebrae
Note: Surgeries are not always 100 percent effective. You may still have lingering pain or be unable to return to the same activities you enjoyed before your accident.
Surgery can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to upwards of $90,000, according to CostHelper.com. Physical therapy can cost up to $150 a session and medications can cost hundreds.
In addition to medical bills, your surgery may keep you out of work for up to six weeks and you might even need to change careers. This can lead to a lot of stress and mental anguish.
Fortunately, you may be able to recover compensation for all of it and more.
How can I recover compensation?
Under New York’s no-fault accident laws, your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage will be your first option. Your PIP will cover your injuries and lost wages up to your policy limits (at least $50,000). Surgeries and physical therapies can easily eclipse that limit. Have no fear; you may have other options.
If your accident was the result of another driver’s negligence and you can prove you suffered a serious injury, you may be able to hold that driver liable for your injuries.
To recover compensation, you must be able to prove the other driver was negligent.
Where can I get help with my case?
Filing a claim is difficult enough when you are not attempting to recover from surgery or figure out how to pay your bills. Let us help. The Long Island car accident attorneys from Goldstein & Bashner have decades of experience helping injured New Yorkers get the compensation they deserve.
Contact us today for help: 516-874-4362.