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Whiplash from a Car Accident

Whiplash injuries often do not receive the attention they deserve. This can be true in terms of medical attention and financial compensation. As a soft tissue injury, whiplash is more difficult to diagnose and also more complicated to point a finger at and say “ah, on a severity scale of one to 10, this is an eight.” Insurance companies often take every avenue when confronted with a large settlement or lawsuit, and the lack of a concrete medical diagnosis is something they may attempt to use to their advantage. However, our Salt Lake whiplash attorneys have won significant whiplash settlements and lawsuits for our clients over the years, and are confident that they can do the same for you. If you are the victim of a whiplash injury, we strongly encourage you to seek help at once.

What is Whiplash Anyways?

The Mayo Clinic refers to whiplash as the rapid back and forth motion of the neck, much like the “cracking of a whip.” During whiplash, the head may reach accelerations of many Gs, or gravitational forces. Muscles, ligaments, nerves, and arteries can all be torn or damaged during this sudden acceleration and deceleration process. It is no wonder why your neck hurts as badly as it does. However, neck injuries are not the only source of pain or complaint for those who suffer from whiplash. Do you suffer from cervical pain, headache, or a serious pain in the shoulders that your doctor may have described as scapulodynia? These are all very common aftereffects of a serious case of whiplash, and they can last anywhere from days to weeks to months. Additionally, a recent study published in the U.S. National Library of Medicine found that vertigo and dizziness are also reported in 25 to 50 percent of whiplash cases. The authors also found that a significant number of whiplash victims also suffer from vertebrobasilar artery insufficiency (VBI), a condition caused by whiplash that is characterized by slow blood flow to the brain. VBI leads to brainstem and cerebellar ischemia and infarction, also known as a stroke. This is caused when an artery tears. It is vital to seek experienced medical treatment immediately after a whiplash injury, and continue regular checkups and physical therapy with an established medical team. We know that this is not cheap, which is why seeking financial compensation from the negligent party is so important.

Whiplash Signs, Symptoms, and Complications

The following are signs, symptoms, and complications related to whiplash:

  • Neck pain;
  • Headache;
  • Pain in upper shoulders;
  • Dizziness;
  • Vertigo;
  • Stroke.

Traumatic brain injury is another common injury that goes along with whiplash, and if left untreated, can result in serious complication and even death. Whiplash is a serious injury and should be compensated as such.

Whiplash Caused by Low-Speed Collisions

In the past there has been much debate about the severity of a person’s whiplash during a low-speed collision. Can a person really sustain serious whiplash injury during a low-speed Salt Lake collision? Are they faking it? The question, however, has been long-since answered. Yes, even a very low-speed crash can cause serious and long-lasting, even permanent, damage. Were you hit from behind at less than 10 miles per hour? If so, there are likely no skid marks and there may not even be damage to your car. However, it is entirely possible to be seriously injured in a crash like this. The neck, which is put under large stress because of the weight of the head, can be damaged in crashes where the other car was traveling just eight miles per hour. There are many factors that go into determining how severe a person’s whiplash may be, including:

  • Type of car;
  • Presence of airbag or side airbags;
  • Direction of the collision (side, front, or rear);
  • Age of the crash victim;
  • Pre-existing injuries;
  • Strength of neck;
  • Speed of the crash; and
  • Multiple impact crash or rollover.

As you can see, speed is one of many factors regarding whiplash severity. Just because the crash you were involved in was low-speed, or you were fully stopped and were rear-ended, does not mean that your injuries are anything less than severe. Our whiplash attorneys in Salt Lake know this, and have the ability to prove it in court or negotiate a fair and substantial settlement out of court.

Call the Knowledgeable and Caring Attorneys of Christensen & Hymas Today

The compassionate Salt Lake City car accident lawyers of Christensen & Hymas are ready to provide assistance so that you can make a full recovery, both physically and financially. Call us today for help.

Kenneth L. Christensen


D. Russell Hymas


Jake Lee