A patient diligently filled out his new patient questionnaire, checking a “0” for number of auto accidents that he had been in. In today’s busy, distracted world, it seems everyone has been in at least one auto accident within their lifetime. When questioning him, he confirmed, “I have never been in an accident.”
An exam followed, and his neck showed evidence of a significant past trauma, such as an auto accident. Again, I questioned him. “No,” he responded, “but I was run over by a car when I was playing in the street as a kid.” That counts as an auto accident! The body stores the effects of our life, including auto accidents.
So often patients are in auto accidents and dismiss their injuries as something time will routinely take care of, just as easily as a cut heals. Unfortunately, patients’ neck X-rays will sometimes show a major side-effect from a minor auto accident years later.
A perfect example of the need to take a cautionary stance following an auto accident played out on TV’s Sports Center on February 12, 2017. Former Pirate Sean Rodriguez, fresh off signing an 11 million dollar contract with the Braves, was in an auto accident in Miami a few months ago. “No injuries were reported,” according to the TV news ticker.
Now, with the start of the Braves spring training, his updated status was reported through all sports news sources: “Rodriguez had shoulder surgery due to the auto accident and is out for 3 to 5 months, likely the season.” Auto accidents are simple physics: force = mass × acceleration. Cars weigh a lot, so the force absorbed by your body is a lot.
Proper nerve flow, joint movement, and muscle strength
are our focuses following an accident.
Emphasis on these will allow you to create a healthier future.