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Researchers Devise a New Strategy to Determine if Whiplash Will Have Long-Term Consequences

Posted on in Personal Injury

Wisconsin accident attorney, Wisconsin personal injury lawyerWhiplash has remained one of medicine’s strange mysteries, especially in cases where there are long-term pain and complication. However, a new study has devised a way that may help in predicting which patients are likely to experience long-lasting symptoms, which can prove to be beneficial in ensuring proper treatment and interventions are provided. Though only a single study at this point, this new diagnostic method could prove to be highly beneficial in treating automobile accident victims in the future.

Risk Group Division and Long-Term Complications

Conducted by the Danish “Whiplash Study Group” and presented at the Second Congress of the European Academy of Neurology (EAN) in Copenhagen, the study followed the outcomes of 326 automobile accident victims diagnosed with whiplash. Each had received a clinical examination within four days of the injury and were then assigned to a risk group, based on factors relating to the type and nature of their pain, type and number of painful complaints, and mobility of their neck. Those that complained of severe headaches, strong neck pain, and displayed a negative emotional state were placed in the highest risk group. The rest were categorized according to the severity of their symptoms.

More than a decade later, researchers followed up with each of the patients and asked them to complete a questionnaire regarding ongoing symptoms. They were specifically asked about any non-painful complaints, persistent or ongoing pain, analgesics prescribed to them to treat any pain, and medical treatment since their original diagnosis. Furthermore, sick time was recorded for each patient to ensure a subjective assessment was given regarding the effect that whiplash had made on their lives.

With a great deal of accuracy, researchers discovered that the patients who had been assigned to the highest risk group were those most heavily affected in the long-term. They complained specifically of neck, shoulder, head, and arm pain, as well as lower back pain. They also displayed a number of neurological symptoms more often than those that had been assigned to lower risk groups and had received pain medication much more frequently. Furthermore, they reported and displayed the greatest level of posttraumatic stress symptoms long after the accident.

Long-Term Whiplash Symptoms Should Be Factored into Your Auto Accident Settlement

While insurance companies often tend to balk at the idea that whiplash can significantly impact a person’s life for a long period of time, this study, along with reports from countless accident victims, show that long-term complications from whiplash are a real and sometimes devastating phenomena. When this happens – or when an accident victim is at risk for it happening – that risk should be factored into their settlement award.

At Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown LLP we consider all relative factors and ensure they are weighed accurately in settlement negotiations. Fiercely committed to your best interest, we advocate for your best interest, every step of the way. Get the skilled representation you deserve and contact a Milwaukee, Wisconsin automobile accident law firm with more than four decades of experience. Call us at 414-271-1440 and schedule your confidential consultation today.




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