Auto Injury / Denver Car Accident

Unfortunately, most doctors do not have specific training when it comes to automobile collision related injuries. It is not just regular medical doctors that miss this problem, but also most radiologists are not even looking for this hidden injury. The amount force experienced in an auto collision is unique in that it produces a condition that is also unique to the body. I’ve personally seen time and time again that the injury goes unnoticed and not worked up appropriately. This can have lifelong health repercussions and legal repercussions when this problem is not uncovered.

This is why it is very important for your well being to utilize specific car accident doctors that have been trained in dealing with these unique injuries. I’ve also seen doctors believe that the patient is faking their injuries because nothing is showing up on standard imaging studies. Unfortunately, this happens all too often because doctors are not accustomed to looking for Spinal Ligament damage.

The spine is held together by about a dozen different ligaments organized in a complex fashion which give rise to the spine’s stability. When one of these ligaments have been disrupted, the spine loses some of its integrity. The muscles often try and compensate by becoming very tight, which ultimately gives rise to myofascial pain syndromes that can be stubborn to treat.  It’s often understood that when a patient is injured in a car crash, that the person has sustained a strain and a sprain, one of the most common diagnoses given. This begs the question of what is exactly sprained and strained.

Our diagnosis codes don’t even reflect the exact location of the sprain. This is very problematic because if the doctor doesn’t know where the exact sprain has occurred, how can one decide on which therapy to use or which site to target the therapy.

The whole idea of a spinal ligament being sprained is not new, but it is one of the most commonly overlooked conditions because there are many factors that go into trying to find these lesions. This is where the team approach in a multidisciplinary setting surpasses non-integrated clinics. There are also other factors of why these types of injuries are going unnoticed, which you can read more about in our blog.

Author: Dr. Trent Artichoker

Denver Chiropractic, LLC
3890 Federal Blvd Unit 1
Denver, CO 80211

303-455-2225

As if being injured by someone else isn’t bad enough, now you have to navigate the world of doctors, multiple auto insurance adjusters, car repairs and sales, tow trucks, attorneys, and many more intermediary people. It is stressful and often everyone around you has different opinions on what you should do and how you should do it. To make it even more difficult, conflicting advice from doctors and attorneys often come up and need to be sorted. One such area of this labrynth is how the payment is handled for the medical care required to fix your car accident injuries.
This brings up a very large and important topic in today’s world of ever increasing deductibles, in and out of network providers, copays, coinsurance, insurance verification, non covered services, and auto accident documentation inequalities compared to health insurance documentation requirements. There are times when it can be advantageous to use health insurance and times when it is advantageous to not use your health insurance.
First off, the primary insurance that is to be used when you are in a car accident is your own auto insurance. There is a benefit that is called Med-Pay on your policy specifically to be used to pay for your medical care. Your insurance rates will not go up if you use this benefit. Your first step is to call your insurance and get a claim number for your Med-Pay. If you do not have Med-Pay, you can use a car accident lien to pay for your medical care and bypass your health insurance all together. Lets break this quandary down and get to the meat and potatoes of this friendly advice on how using health insurance may hamper your care and wallet.
1. Lower Quality Care: For example, Blue Cross Blue Shield will reimburse a chiropractor $41 regardless of which procedure being performed. I can do 1 procedure or do 10 procedures and the clinic will still get $41. This leads to doctors playing the volume game. Why would a doctor spend a 1/2 hour on a patient when they get the same for spending 1 minute on a patient. You lose out on quality health care and makes you more vulnerable to permanent injuries. Aetna, Denver Health, Cigna, and Kaiser are even worse when it comes to reimbursement. Columbine process those insurance and takes $13 off the top, this can lead to reimbursement being lower than medicare reimbursements. Not to mention the cost on the provider just to submit a claim. The saying you get what you pay for rings very true in this case.
2. Up Front Cost: You will need to verify your health insurance benefits. Set aside at least half an hour or more to do this as it can be very confusing, especially if you need procedures that are not covered by your health insurance. Most people’s health insurance plans have very high deductibles, greater than $5K is becoming customary. This places an undue economic burden on the patient that will dissuade them from completing a treatment plan. Costs can reach thousands of dollars in a very short period when they have to see MD, PT, Chiro, Specialists, and complete imaging. Other than meeting deductibles, lots of manual therapies, such as ART, Graston, Massage, Dry Needling, and Cold Laser are not even covered by health insurance.
3. Providers in Multiple Locations: Ideally, your care should be multifaceted utilizing an MD, Chiro, PT, Massage, Imaging, and potentially more providers. This is an obstacle that adds an extra barrier to obtaining quality care in a timely manner. This also creates a large disconnect between providers, which decreases quality of treatment. Our clinic, for instance specializes in car accident care in Denver, CO and is concierge style where we have all providers and imaging options in one place.
4. Decrease Quality of Medical Records: This is one area that is often over looked in car accident care. Your injuries need attention and care, but the legal side of your situation needs the same. For example, one of my patients was recommended that she a Spine Surgeon and use her health insurance for problems with a suspected facet joint by her attorney. I was able to treat her initially, and with conservative methods brought her up to 80% normal. I advised her to see one of our specialists that does not accept health insurance, but her attorney told her to use her health insurance (purely for economical reasons). She went to Denver Health and received a Facet Injection. The doctors records indicated that this procedure was a complete success. The patient ceased care since the doctor told her that the procedure was a success. She tells the attorney that she was discharged. Initial settlement comes out very low because the doctors notes say that the procedure was a success without any follow up. I run into the patient, we talk, she says that she is still 80% normal. She received a facet injection, which is purely diagnostic and not meant for long term therapy. Her health insurance failed her, and her attorney failed her, and she is still in pain with documents that do not support it. Health insurance doctors work on volume, in which quality of care decreases and documentation standards become sub par.
5. Case Management Shifted to the Patient/Client: When patients are going to multiple locations for care their is no single person in charge and this is when patients fall through the cracks. Their is no coach or quarterback. This leads to people not getting the correct care or documentation for their automobile injuries. General medical doctors are not specifically trained in automobile injury case management or documentation. Not to mention, some doctors will not treat auto accident injuries as liability increases and the fact that this puts an extra burden on a clinic as record requests and administration time increases for car accident related injuries.
6. Health Insurance Limits: Most plans only cover so many visits of physical therapy and chiropractic benefits. In […]

Auto Accident Injury Treatment

Not all auto accident injury treatment was created equal. I have found that the best approach utilizes multi disciplinary integrative treatment plans. This allows the best treatment options available from the variety of health care practitioners that treat whiplash accident injuries. Conversely, an approach that utilizes only one profession, such as chiropractic, massage, or anyone profession might not yield the best results for several reasons.

Going to your local family chiropractor for your whiplash accident may help temporarily, but ancillary services will help speed up your recovery and help prevent future aggravation of your injuries. Chiropractic is an excellent option to help realign the spine, but physical therapy will also keep the adjustments lasting longer. Massage therapy will help improve the circulation and help decrease excessive muscle tension that pulls the spine out of alignment. The medical doctor helps authorize the care so the insurance company pays as well as supervising treatment and provide any necessary referrals to specialists when needed.

In Denver we are seeing a huge jump in our population which is also congesting our roads. The increase in traffic is also causing an increase in whiplash accidents in Denver. These types of accidents can be very serious, and can produce significant injuries, such as concussions (mild traumatic brain injuries), facet syndrome, strains/sprains, which is what people with whiplash usually get in an accident.

Besides improved care with a multi disciplinary approach, your legal case also become better in terms of documentation. Improved documentation results in an increase in your case value, which means your rights are being protected. Utilizing one type of health provider will decrease your case value, this will decrease the funding needed for future medical expenses and may not help you recover all of your lost wages or any other economic damages.

Auto accident injury treatment in Denver provides the best outcomes with an integrative approach. Denver Chiropractic, LLC is an almost 4,000 square foot facility that houses chiropractic, massage, medical doctor (Dr. Lee Moorer), physician assistant, physical therapy, physical therapy assistant, acupuncture, and a rock solid team of assistants. If you are involved a whiplash accident or any other type of car accident in Denver, our team would to help you out. Call us 303-455-2225 to schedule a free consult for your auto accident injury treatment.

Author: Dr. Trent Artichoker

Denver Chiropractic, LLC
3890 Federal Blvd Unit 1
Denver, CO 80211

car accident injury doctor

All automobile accidents are painful. Not only can there be expensive physical damage to your car, but there can also be serious injuries to the precious cargo inside your car – you and your passengers.

In the chaos following an accident, it’s not unusual for those involved to imagine that they feel just fine. The adrenaline racing through your body masks pain very effectively. Sometimes days or even weeks later, pain from injuries suffered in even what seemed to be an inconsequential accident can manifest itself in crippling ways. You may suddenly find that you cannot work, cannot play, and that the quality of your life has been seriously restricted. It is for this reason that you should quickly head to a chiropractor after an automobile accident.

In cases such as these, the passage of time can erode your rights to recover damages from the negligent driver. The tick-tock of passing time can be your worst enemy.

In the heat of the moment, we rarely think about future medical expenses, lost wages, pain, suffering, and the other cataclysmic impacts that may be visited upon you and your family as a result of someone else’s negligence.  In order to protect yourself, it is essential that you visit a qualified chiropractor as soon after your accident as possible so that you can have a professional evaluation of your physical condition. If you wait until the painful evidence develops, you may be too late.

Of course, we hope you’re well. Too often, though, symptoms of whiplash, musculoskeletal trauma, or even internal injuries can develop after the fact – if you have not seen a chiropractor in a timely fashion or, worse, if you have been rushed into the settlement of your claim by an over-eager insurance adjustor, your right to recover these damages may already be gone.

Accidents happen – but, we know that lives can be forever altered as a consequence of someone else’s negligence. Thankfully, our system of justice works to protect the innocent, but it only works when you do your part. Protect yourself and your family. If you are involved in an automobile accident, get a chiropractic evaluation as soon as possible. Denver Chiropractic, LLC is your best bet, if you’re in the Denver area. And whatever else you do, don’t be badgered into settlement of your claim before you know how seriously the quality of your entire life might be diminished (–for that, check out TengeLaw.com who offers services in the Denver area as well.)

When the body is injured in multiple places it can be difficult for the body to heal itself. You can get back pain from whiplash, a head injury from whiplash, headaches, injuries to the discs, injury to the joints, injuries to the muscles and other supporting tissue, etc. Most often times during a whiplash accident, multiple types of tissue are injured in multiple places. This is the reason you will need treatment and unfortunately you will need more than one treatment.

Below is a table summarizing whiplash injury treatment in Colorado from an auto accident chiropractor. Whiplash is also termed cervical acceleration deceleration syndrome.  The grading of your injuries will be determined by your personal injury chiropractor.

Denver Whiplash Specialist

1. Adapted from Croft AC:   Treatment paradigm for cervical acceleration/deceleration injuries (whiplash).   Am Chiro Assoc J Chiro 30(1):   41-45, 1993.

2. TD indicates treatment duration; TN treatment total number;

3. Possible follow-up at 1 month.

4. May require permanent monthly or p.r.n. treatment.

As you notice, treatment frequency is daily for the first week for the most minor case that could last 11 weeks with a total of 21 visits. If your Denver car accident doctor evaluated you and recommended such a treatment length it is because whiplash injuries take time to heal with proper treatment. Without proper treatment they may never heal properly and preclude you to chronic pain.

As a Denver car crash specialist, I regularly get the deer in the headlights look when I explain to people that they will need approximately 20 plus treatments. I understand that this seems like a lot of treatment, but then again you just had a 3,000 pound vehicle slam into you. Auto accident injuries are unique in that the crash imparts a tremendous amount of force on the vehicle occupants in a very short amount of time (mass=force x acceleration).

If you were in an auto accident in Denver, we can help. If you do not have med pay on your auto insurance, we can provide treatment to you on a lien. A chiropractic lien in Denver is paid off at the end of your treatment through the settlement by the at fault insurance company.

It is very important for you to have patience as your car accident whiplash injuries take time to heal. It is also important to know that you will have aggravations of your injuries, and that healing is an up and down process. Your car accident chiropractor will know if you need to see a specialist or get imaging.

Please feel free to add a question to the comment section or email us at the clinic.

Denver Chiropractic

Injuries

  1. Be Patient – You will get better, but it can takes months of healing as your body experienced a very large amount of force.
  2. Flare Ups – It is normal to have aggravations of your injuries. Healing is an up and down process.
  3. Getting to 100% – Follow your treatment plan! National statistics show an average number of treatments is 26 for whiplash injury.

Treatment 

  1. Chiropractic Adjustments – Spinal manipulation is very important as your injuries produce spasms, stiffness, and tight muscles. This causes the spine to not work properly. Restoring the motion and alignment of the spine is paramount to your recovery.
  2. Physiotherapies – This includes exercise, electrotherapy, moist heat, myofascial release, massage, cold laser therapy, etc.
  3. Initial and Final treatments – It is important for the insurance company and the attorney to have a formal discharge from our clinic. Our clinic produces an extensive initial narrative and a final narrative that is very important for your case.
  4. Duration and Frequency – People respond the best with the following:
    1. 3 times per week for 4 weeks
    2. 2 times per week for 4 weeks
    3. 1 time per week for 4 weeks.
  5. Referral – If you are not responding to care, (you should experience some improvement with each treatment) or need co-managed, we have an extensive network of professionals that we work with.

Who Pays for Your Treatment

  1. Med Pay (your auto insurance) – By default you get $5,000 with certain policies to use for medical bills. It is your advantage to use your Med Pay
  2. No – Med Pay = Lien (others auto insurance) – The at fault auto insurance will not pay medical providers directly and will only pay through settlement via an attorney at the end of your treatment, you may need a car accident lien.
  3. Health Insurance/Cash Visit – We don’t accept health insurance or cash prices as our contracts and cash prices do not include the documentation services we provide for auto injury patients.

Attorneys

 Need or Not Need? – If you have been injured and the damage to your car is greater than $1,000 then you need an attorney. If you are being treated on a lien, you need an attorney

  1. Which Attorney? – We have a list of attorneys that we have found reputable and professional that we prefer to work with, but you are free to use your own attorney.
Auto injury doctor in Denver, Dr. Trent Artichoker can assist in specialized treatment and care. Contact Denver Chiropractic today to learn more.

 

By Fort Collins Chiropractor Dr. Mathew Ullom BSc, DC

Following a Whiplash accident, there are a host of different common symptoms that can happen.  Some of the more common symptoms include neck pain, headaches, pain at the base of your head, shoulder, and even jaw pain.  Other symptoms include but are not limited to numbness and tingling, muscle spasms, difficulty sleeping, irritability, memory loss, ringing in the ears, weakness, and concentration issues.

Although the term whiplash is the most commonly used term it is archaic and the more recent and more explanative terms are CAD (cervical acceleration deceleration) injury and cervical hyperextension injury, although for the purposes of this article I will use the term whiplash for simplicity.  Analyzing slow motion videos of auto accidents easily gives reason for the updated terminology.  On impact the head whips forward or back and then recoils the opposite direction, in a fraction of a second.

The most common mechanism of injury is an auto accident.  It is very important that your doctor asks the right questions and documents them accordingly.  It is the little details that matter in an accident and this is especially important when it comes to settling your case.  Damage that occurs to ligaments, discs, and joints can be significantly worse if your head was turned looking into the rearview mirror or talking to a passenger.  While driving with one hand can cause rotation in your mid back or having one foot on the brake can torque your pelvis.  As you can see it is the minute details that mater and if the doctor you are seeing is not asking these detailed questions you should probably be asking yourself if you are in the right place.

How long it takes for you to heal whiplash syndromes depends on how severe the trauma sustained to your body is and what structures and tissues were damaged.  But for a quick guideline, muscles usually heal the quickest, taking a few months to repair, ligament and tendons can take six months or more, and discs can take over a year to heal completely.  If you have pain that lasts more than 4-6 months it is often associated with a spinal problem in your spine involving the facets (a part of your vertebrae), ligaments and/or discs that is most likely affecting your nervous system slowing the healing process.

Whiplash treatment in Fort Collins and other cities can be quite diverse.   And if you have read this far you can see the value of finding the right doctor.  You need a doctor, who is detail orientated, trained in soft tissue injuries, and who is genuinely concerned about you, not just a pay check.  When you head to the hospital they will check your vitals, look for broken bones and life-threatening conditions and release you with some medication for the pain.  Their focus is on life and death and not on treating underlying musculoskeletal problems that often lead to future pain and degeneration.  What you need to understand is that pills will not correct structural or soft tissue damage, there are specialized therapies designed for treatment of these injuries that some chiropractors will utilize.

There have been numerous studies that have shown early manipulation and mobilization have better outcomes than waiting weeks or months to seek chiropractic care.  Our Fort Collins whiplash treatment goal for you is to get you back to pre-accident state as quickly as possible.

 

If you are like most people that have been in an auto accident, you probably think that the at-fault insurance company will take care of all of your medical bills. This may be so, but all too often they will not cover all of your auto accident bills. The at-fault insurance company wants to make sure that your bills are medically necessary. After all, the insurance company has limited monies and is a business that is made to make money. I would like to enlighten you just how you get your bills paid, and how you get your injuries taken care of with-out accumulating too many bills.

It’s pleasant to think that all your bills will just be magically paid, but you will soon realize once Mr. Postman delivers the first bill that you will need a game plan. Insurance adjustors are hard to get on the phone without getting their voicemail, and it may be difficult or seem impossible to get a return call from them. A typical bill from the emergency room that did a CT scan is $7,000. Wow! I’m sure the insurance company is just beating down your door to pay that for you.

This is when your own auto insurance policy needs to be examined. You have been paying every month to have auto insurance, but what does it exactly cover? If you are like the average Joe, you have no idea what it covers. Hopefully, you have what is called MedPay or PIP as a benefit on your policy.

In Colorado, by default you get $5,000 in MedPay, which covers medical expenses, regardless of who is at-fault. This benefit can help you out quite a bit, but you have to check your declarations page or call your auto insurance to see if you have this benefit. By law you have to sign a waiver to not have this benefit. I know, I know, the other insurance company said they will pay your bills and you don’t want to tap into your precious insurance because you are afraid that your premiums will go up. When you use your benefits that you have been paying for, your premiums will not go up. You have a right to use your MedPay benefits, even if the other insurance company said that they will pay your bills.

Let’s hypothetically look at a car accident situation where you are injured and your car is damaged. Most insurance companies are fair when it comes to reimbursing you for your car. I do recommend that you get several estimates, and if your car is totaled then get comparable prices in your zip code for the same type of car with similar mileage and condition. When it comes to the medical side of your case, it is imperative to go to a Denver auto accident doctor, a whiplash specialist, a chiropractor who treats accident injuries, and so forth.

A qualified Denver car accident doctor will produce detailed documentation of your accident and just how you were injured from your accident. This is very important, because the medical record tell your story, and you want as much of story as possible told. This comes down to how your life is affected due to being injured from someone else. Let’s say you go to the best Denver whiplash specialist and they fix you up good as can be and you accumulate $4,000 in medical bills.

What you might not know is that you are eligible for a bodily injury settlement. The at-fault insurance company will give you a settlement at the end of your treatment that will cover your medical bills and damages. Damages are in the form of lost wages and pain and suffering.

Most people need a good Denver personal injury attorney to get all of this settled, but some courageous people will settle on their own.  Either route you take, we’ll will say that the insurance company settles your case for $6,000. If you have MedPay on your insurance, that $6,000 in your pocket, but if you don’t have MedPay, you only end up with $2,000 since you had to pay your auto accident bills.

In short, having good auto insurance will pay off for you. Check your policy now and add MedPay, it is not very much to have and can save you a ton of money if you are in a car accident. You may need a car accident lien in order to get your treatment, thus your settlement will end up paying your medical bills. Also, go to a well qualified auto accident chiropractor and get a good personal injury attorney on your side.

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