Motor Vehicle Accident Injury: the Importance of Pain Management

March 14, 2016

Though every car accident yields different injuries for each person, there are many common injuries caused by collisions. Even if you are in a simple fender bender, it is important you visit your doctor and receive a physical evaluation as soon as possible. Some injuries are not felt immediately, but could be detrimental to your health later in your life. You may need an MRI to determine if there are serious injuries and what treatments they would require.

Pain management physicians can offer non-surgical solutions for many common car accident injuries. Every injury requires a specialized treatment, which depends on the severity and type of injury. The treatments mentioned below are only possibilities and not guaranteed solutions for each injury listed. Here are some of the common injuries and possible treatments available:


Whiplash is caused by a rapid forceful movement when your body is suddenly stopped or moved in the opposite direction. The weight of your head (between 10-12 pounds) moving forcefully can strain your neck and even damage discs. Whiplash is a common injury from a rear-end collision. Patients may feel stiffness, pain, or headaches for a few months after a whiplash injury, but it can also cause more serious enduring pain. A possible pain management treatment for whiplash could be an occipital nerve block, which consists of a local anesthetic and steroids. This procedure also helps diagnose the source of your pain.

Herniated Discs

Between your spinal vertebrae, there are soft discs that act as a cushion between bones. A forceful event like a car accident can cause these discs to move or squeeze out from between these vertebrae, causing nerve pain. Sometimes herniated discs cause numbness, tingling or weakness in your limbs or other areas of the body. If you feel sharp shooting pains through your limbs, it could be a sign of a more serious injury, however, most herniated discs can be treated without surgery.  A selective nerve root block or Epidural Steroid Injections could treat and diagnose your herniated disc pain.

Neck & Shoulder Pain

Upper thoracic pain (between the shoulder blades) and lower neck pain can also be caused by a car accident. There may be strained ligaments, altered spinal alignment, disc injuries, or other soft tissue injuries that need treatment. Having an injury in the upper thoracic area can cause pain in other areas of the body if not treated quickly. Pain management treatment such as a discogram can help diagnose the source of your neck pain.

Lower Back & Hip Pain

131206_ET_Salonpas_03_home_box_0569 Do not use after Jan31An injury to the lower back can cause pain in your hips legs and other areas of the body. Depending on the type of car accident you experienced, you may experience sciatic nerve pain. You may need epidural steroid injections to minimize the pain. Another pain management treatment option could also be a sacroiliac joint block, which is an injection of a local anesthetic and a steroid into the area where your pelvis and spine meet.

This content is available courtesy of Oklahoma Pain Management.

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