Whiplash in St Louis is a term used to describe a type of neck injury commonly caused by the sudden and forceful hyperextension and hyperflexion of the neck. It is most commonly associated with automobile accidents where the vehicle has been hit from behind. Whiplash may also result from a fall, certain sports, or bungee jumping. Estimates put whiplash injuries at over 1 million per year in the United States, however, this is a conservative figure as not all cases are reported.
The neck has seven vertebrae called cervical vertebrae and the first two (axis and atlas), are shaped differently from the others. These first two vertebrae allow the head to move side to side and forward and backward. In cases resulting in whiplash, the prevailing theory was that upon impact from behind, a person’s neck would be forced backward (hyperextend) as their torso moved forward. This is followed by a brief period of recovery followed by the head being forced forward (hyperflexed). The result is a sudden strain to the vertebrae, muscles, and nerves of the neck.
Through the development of superior crash dummies and high-speed digital cameras, a better understanding of how Whiplash in St Louis occurs, has been determined. After the initial impact, the lower neck vertebrae are forced to hyperextend (backward), while simultaneously the upper neck vertebrae are forced to hyperflex (forward). This results in an unnatural S-shape which is believed to cause damage to the soft tissues responsible for holding the vertebrae together.
Common symptoms include pain in the neck and back (upper shoulders), a sensation described as “pins and needles” in the legs and arms, and headaches. Symptoms generally appear a few days after the incident, but can occur immediately. Other complaints include ringing in the ears, fatigue, dizziness, and jaw pain. One can Visit Website of their Chiropractor for more details on symptoms.
The best course of action after an accident is to seek medical care to determine if whiplash has occurred. Patients are often fitted with a soft neck collar that helps provide support. X-rays may also be taken to determine if any serious injury has occurred. The best recovery results have been seen in those patients that participated in physical therapy, especially those referred to as the early range of motion exercises, within four days post-injury, provided the symptoms permit it.
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