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An Atlanta accident victim’s guide to spinal fractures

 fractured spine may occur when the back experiences sudden high-energy trauma, such as the forces experienced by the body in a Georgia high-speed car accident. Spinal fractures are very serious injuries and treatment may be complicated by additional car crash injuries.
 
There are several types of spinal fractures. Different types of fractures require different treatments.
 
Flexion Fractures
 
There are two types of flexion fractures:
 
1. Compression fractures: In these fractures, the front of the vertebra breaks and loses height, but the back does not.  
2. Axial burst fractures: The vertebra breaks and loses height on both sides.
 
Compression fractures may cause no symptoms at the time of the accident, but if not treated, the victim may notice moderate to severe back pain, loss of height, stooped posture, and significant nerve injury.   
 
Surgery may be required. For this reason, victims of high speed Georgia car wrecks should see a doctor even if they are not experiencing symptoms.
 
Extension Fractures
 
Extension fractures are also called flexion/distraction fractures. In these injuries the vertebra is actually pulled apart. This commonly occurs in a head-on injury when the upper body is violently thrown forward, but the lower body is held in place by a seat belt. Sometimes these injuries are treated non-surgically; the victim must remain in a cast or brace for about 3 months. If the posterior ligaments of the spine are damaged or if the fracture falls through the discs of the spine, surgery is required. In either case, the accident victim must spend a significant amount of time recuperating and is unable to work or go about his daily activities.
 
Rotation Fractures
 
Rotation fractures occur when the impact of an accident causes the spine to suddenly rotate. The most common type of rotation fracture is a fracture-dislocation.
 
In a fracture-dislocation, a vertebra moves off the adjacent vertebra. Such an injury may cause serious spinal cord or nerve compression that leads to paralysis, including paraplegia and quadriplegia.   
 
Fracture-dislocations are often associated with other serious injuries. Treatment often involves multiple surgeries. In cases where the spinal cord is seriously damaged, the victim may experience life-long paralysis.
 
Rehabilitation is always necessary after a spinal fracture.

Victims of Atlanta traffic accidents may spend months or even years recovering from serious injuries. It is only normal to be concerned about how to pay for your medical care, especially if you aren’t able to work. The Law Offices of Shane Smith can help.   
 
Atlanta personal injury attorney Shane Smith represents victims car crashes throughout Georgia. Shane can help you get the fair insurance compensation you need to cover your injuries and your lost wages. To learn more contact our office at 770-HURT-999.

Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia