From seat belts to airbags, the car you drive has many valuable safety features. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, these features make your modern vehicle much safer than those from the past. Still, safety features cannot prevent all catastrophic injuries.
Injuries to the spinal column and spinal cord are often catastrophic, as they can lead to life-limiting complications. Given its location high up on your spinal column, your cervical spine is particularly vulnerable to injury. Indeed, you can develop cervical myelopathy after a car accident.
What is the cervical spine?
The cervical spine is the part that passes through the neck. This area has seven vertebrae, two connective ligaments and several jelly-like disks. To have a healthy cervical spine, each of these components must be healthy and stay in the correct place.
What is myelopathy of the cervical spine?
Cervical myelopathy is a medical condition that happens when something compresses the spinal cord. In the cervical spine, vertebrae, ligaments or disks can be the culprit. Still, spinal cord compression is a serious matter, as the spinal cord delivers nerve signals to all parts of the body.
How does cervical myelopathy happen?
Many individuals with cervical myelopathy developed the condition over time. That is, age-related degeneration can cause anatomical parts to shift and impinge on the spinal cord. Trauma, such as a car crash or slip-and-fall accident, is also a common cause of cervical myelopathy.
You should treat cervical myelopathy as a medical emergency and seek prompt diagnosis and treatment. Ultimately, to help you defray the high costs of medical care, you might be eligible for financial compensation from the responsible driver.