Sciatica is a kind of pain that affects the sciatic nerve, which is a big nerve that goes from the lower back down the rear of both legs.
What Causes Sciatica?
Sciatica is caused by irritation of the root(s) of the lower lumbar and lumbosacral spine. Other causes of sciatica are:
- Lumbar herniated disc
- Spondylolisthesis (one vertebra slips forward above another one)
- Lumbar spinal stenosis (narrowing of the spinal canal in the lower back)
- Degenerative disc disease (breaking down of discs, which are cushions in the middle of the vertebra)
Of those 4 causes, the two that can be accident related are spondylolisthesis and lumbar spinal stenosis.
In a personal injury claim where you’re claiming that a careless party caused your sciatica, you must show that the accident caused your sciatica.
This is one of the things that can make sciatica cases tougher than a case where you’re claiming that a fracture (broken bone) is accident related.
If you’re young, the insurance company likely won’t have a degenerative disc disease defense. Thus, your injury case involving sciatica may be easier if you’re younger.
Even if you have degenerative disc disease, you may still be able to win or settle your sciatica case. The big question will be whether you had symptoms of sciatica before the accident. If you didn’t, this helps.
If you had signs of sciatica before the accident, it is tougher to prove that the accident caused or aggravated your sciatica. The worse that your symptoms of sciatica were before the accident, the tougher it is to prove that the current accident caused your sciatica.
Other things that can make your back pain worse include being overweight, not exercising regularly, or wearing high heels. Expect the insurance company to argue that one of these caused your back pain.
They will argue that your sciatica, if any, is not the cause of your back pain.
In an attempt to argue that your sciatica wasn’t caused by the accident, the insurance company may use a study by Scott Boden, M.D. In that study, an MRI found that, of 67 people who never had back pain, many of them had issues in their backs of which they were unaware.
Lady Wins $539,850.00 for Sciatica and Other Injuries from Car Crash
This is not my case. See a case where a driver was awarded $539,850 after a DUI driver hit her. Her attorney said that the doctor’s report said that she had:
- chronic post traumatic lumbar sprain/strain
- chronic post traumatic sciatica.
She had neck surgery.
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