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5 Things to Do Right Away if You Suspect You Have a Spine Injury

By May 29, 2024June 24th, 2024No Comments

Do you think you might have a spine injury? Whether you have pain from a fall, you have back pain from a car accident, or you have whiplash that you think is affecting both your neck and back, knowing what to do can significantly help your recovery.

Here are five crucial steps to take right away if you suspect you have a spine injury.

1. Stop and Assess the Situation

Assess your symptoms: Do you feel severe pain, numbness, or tingling in your back, neck, or limbs? These could be signs of a serious back or spinal injury, and it’s crucial not to ignore them. Also, don’t move from where you are unless it’s more unsafe to stay. When help comes, be sure to relay your symptoms to your medical professional in detail.

2. Call for Emergency Help

Immediately call 911 or ask someone else to do it for you. Explain what happened and your symptoms clearly to the operator, emphasizing if you have any of the following: severe pain, inability to move certain parts of your body, or any signs of a spinal fracture. Seeking medical help as soon as possible is vital in preventing further damage or pain and ensuring you receive the appropriate treatment.

3. Avoid Moving Unless You’re in a Life-Threatening Spot

As we mentioned earlier, stay still if you suspect you have a spinal injury. Movement can exacerbate a spine injury, potentially leading to more injury. If you’re with someone who has a suspected spine injury, don’t attempt to move them unless necessary. If the injured person must move to a safer location, keep the spine as straight and stable as possible. If you can, place rolled-up towels or sheets on either side of the head to help keep the head and neck still.

4. Seek Immediate Medical Evaluation from a Spine Specialist

Once you’ve received initial emergency care, it’s essential to get an evaluation from a spine medicine doctor like Dr. Choi or Dr. Toombs, your spine specialists at Spine Medicine and Surgery of Long Island. Not sure if you need to see a spine specialist? Back health is vital to day-to-day mobility, so we recommend going in for a spine consultation, especially if you have symptoms like persistent pain.

You should also see a spine specialist if you experience back injury symptoms like severe back pain, numbness, tingling, or loss of control over your bladder or bowels. These are signs of a possible spinal fracture or nerve damage.

When you visit us at our Ronkonkoma or Garden City office for a consultation, we’ll diagnose your condition and recommend a treatment plan. A consultation could include diagnostics such as imaging tests like X-rays, MRIs, or CT scans to determine the extent of the injury, if you’re a good candidate for spinal surgery, or other treatments.

5. Spine Injury Treatment and Rehabilitation

At Spine Medicine & Surgery of Long Island, personalized patient care is a priority. Part of that approach is recommending minimally invasive techniques and pain management that allow our patients to find relief with less downtime. We may also suggest physical therapy, back exercises, or at-home care that will help you regain strength, flexibility, and function.

A Word on Whiplash and Its Impact

One common spine injury resulting from car accidents is whiplash. Many wonder, “Is whiplash serious?” or “Can whiplash cause a concussion or other injuries?” The answer is yes; whiplash can be quite serious, leading to prolonged pain and discomfort. What is whiplash, exactly? It’s when the neck is forcefully jerked back and forth, a movement that can damage the soft tissues in your neck and upper back. In some cases, the force can be severe enough to cause a concussion.

If you’re experiencing symptoms like neck pain, headaches, dizziness, or fatigue after an accident, these could be a result of whiplash, and it’s crucial to seek medical advice. As spine specialists, Dr. Choi and Dr. Toombs can address your whiplash and advise on the best course of action.

Seek Treatment From Your Trusted Spine Doctor in NY

Dealing with a spine injury requires prompt and careful action to keep you safe, prevent further injury, and facilitate recovery. Your Ronkonkoma and Garden City spine specialists, like Dr. Choi or Dr. Toombs, can help you navigate the challenging times after a spine injury, ensuring you get the best possible care. And if pain management is what you need, our pain management specialist, Dr. Argyriou, can offer treatments to reduce, eliminate or manage the back or neck pain from your spine injury.

Contact your premier spine care team in NY for a consultation and to learn what to do about your spine injury.

Dr. Daniel Choi

Author Dr. Daniel Choi

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