This article focuses on work-related injuries to your low back, or lumbar spine. However, we want you to be aware that that any injury to any part of your spinal cord can be very serious. Your spinal cord is one component of your body. It’s a complex component in that the human spinal column is made up of 33 bones; 7 vertebrae in the cervical region, 12 in the thoracic region, 5 in the lumbar region, 5 in the sacral region, and 4 in the coccygeal region1. As a result of its complexity, injuries to the spinal column are common.
At Dolman Law Group, we take pride in having extensive experience handling cases involving various injuries to all conceivable parts of the human body. The spinal column is one part of the body in which we gained expertise. As the spinal column is only one part of a human body, representing injured workers in workers compensation claims is only one area in which we practice. A visit to our website will provide you with more info as to the other areas we handle.
Florida’s workers compensation laws do not favor individuals who sustain an injury in the course and scope of their employment or otherwise suffer from a work-related injurious condition. Having representation ensures you receive the benefits you’re entitled to. It is important to understand that from the moment you report any work accident or work-related condition, your interests and those of the workers compensation insurance company are entirely opposed to one another. You have an interest in getting better and receiving the full amount of monetary benefits you’re entitled to. The workers compensation insurance company’s interest is spending absolutely as little for your care, treatment, and wages, as possible. Regardless of the nature of your injury or injuries, and regardless of whether you believe you’re receiving everything you’re entitled to, a consultation with our office is free.
Job injuries can impact any part of the body. One of the most common types of injuries to sustain on the job is to the low back (lumbar spine). This section of your spinal cord endures significant amounts of pressure when you engage in lifting, carrying, bending, pulling, or otherwise performing the functions of your job. The pressure on your lumbar spine is increased in proportion to the amount of weight added to the equation. Your lumbar spine consists of 5 vertebrae. They are L1, L2, L3, L4, and L5. Of those 5, L3 and L4 are the most likely areas in which you can experience a herniated disc. What is a disc? A disc in your spinal column can be considered a shock absorber between your vertebrae. As explained above, your vertebrae are the bones in your spinal cord. The disc itself is generally circular in shape and filled with cerebral spinal fluid. A total of 23 discs exist in your spinal column. If an accident results in any of your discs becoming pushed out of alignment, the possibility of nerve root compression exists. A disc that is out of alignment is often referred to as herniated, bulging, or protruding. An MRI is the most common type of diagnostic study to determine if a disc is out of alignment. Because a disc is essentially tissue and not bone, an x-ray will not reveal any herniations, bulges, or protrusions.
To help understand the severity of injuries to your spinal cord, an explanation of the significance it has in regard to your daily ability to function will be helpful. The spinal cord contains the nerves that carry messages between your brain and body2. Essentially, your spinal cord acts as the information highway between your brain and the remainder of your body. An injury to your cervical, thoracic, or lumbar spine can occur from an automobile accident, motorcycle accident, slip and fall, trucking accident, traumatic brain injury, a fall, or any other type of injury to the face, neck, head, or chest. There are more circumstances in which you could sustain an injury to your spinal cord than you likely realize.
As the “information highway,” messages from your brain to your body must travel back and forth through your spinal cord. An injury to the spinal cord can interrupt your brain’s ability to send and receive messages. If a disc is pushed out of alignment, that disc can interrupt the transmission and receipt of signals sent by your brain. The symptoms you would experience in such circumstances would be numbness and tingling into either your right or left arm, or right or left leg. The numbness and tingling can also be associated with feelings of pain and loss of sensation. If you sustain an injury to your lumbar spine, and the symptoms you experience are numbness, tingling, or pain into any part of either of your legs, contact us. Symptoms such as those just described are considered to be radicular in nature. Radicular symptomatology is indicative of an injury that is likely to be quite serious. Left untreated, such an injury could result in paralysis.
Dolman Law Group
5435 Main Street
New Port Richey, FL 34652