Does a person get injured in a car accident when the car sustains no damage? Unfortunately, the auto insurance industry, with shareholder interests in mind would say of course of not. This is my generalization of course, but I have seen this multiple times where an auto insurer will not pay a claim because there is no damage to the car. These types of cases are extremely difficult to fight, and sadly leaves many victims by the wayside to deal with the burden and suffering of permanent injuries.
A study by Szabo and Welcher (1), examined the effects on the human frame with live test volunteers with a series of 10mph crashes. No structural damages occurred to the test vehicles, which were Volvos fitted with standard head rests. The car accidents were recorded with high speed cameras, and sensors recording acceleration of the cervical spine and lumbar region were recorded.
Due to variances in size, weight, height, gender, build, they found that the cervical spine accelerated dramatically. The acceleration ranged from 6.6 g – 17.2 g forces. The acceleration of the lumbar region ranged from 3.9 – 7.5 g forces. Other noteworthy data collected was the acceleration was produced before any muscle activity was produced.
This like getting punched in the head with out you knowing that you were going to get punched. Guarding and stiffening would have helped prevent injury, so getting rear ended in a car accident with out your knowledge of the impeding impact will create more damage. This goes against the collective thought created with drunk drivers having less injuries than their counterpart accident victims. Guarding protects the body, and drunk drivers do fairly well in car accidents because they are the ones doing the hitting.
As a car accident doctor in Denver, I have seen many people end up with permanent injuries from whiplash scenarios that create brain injury. With the head having the potential to accelerate over 17 g forces, widespread permanent injuries can occur.
The astronauts black out during High g training at 4-6 g, and a constant 15 g-s for a minute is deadly. During a car accident, the g force occurs with in a split second, which is enough time to create a brain injury.
The brain injury can be severe or mild, and the mild brain injuries often escape the car accident doctor in Denver. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported in 1989 that the annual number of brain injuries in 7 million. This equates to 1 injury for every 40 citizens, and that is why traumatic brain injuries are noted as the silent epidemic.
Sadly I have seen this in my chiropractic clinic. A person gets rear ended, minor to moderate damage occurs to the car, and the person has neck pain, headaches, and back pain. Careful observation from a car accident doctor in Denver that is trained to deal with auto injuries can spot mild traumatic brain injuries.
Brain injuries from car accidents are simple to understand. The brain is soft, and the skull is hard which makes the brain susceptible to damage. The brain basically sloshes around in the skull, which end up shearing axons, and thus creating damage.
If you have been in an auto collision in Denver, it is imperative for your well being to see a car accident doctor in Denver that has special training in detecting this silent epidemic. Feel free to call, if you would like a free consultation.
Dr. Trent Artichoker MS, DC
Denver Chiropractic, LLC
3890 Federal Blvd Unit 1
Denver, CO 80211
1. Szabo TJ, Welcher JB: Human subject kinematics and elecromyographich activity during low speed rear impacts. SAE paper 962432, 295-315, 1996