If you’ve been involved in a car accident, it is entirely possible that you can get a neck fracture if the forces are sufficient. In some cases, if you have a pre-existing problem with your neck, you might be more susceptible to injury. Also, your age may be a factor. Finally, the mechanism of injury is important (i.e., what kind of forces were exerted on the cervical spine). Sometimes, the fracture can be minor (sometimes called a hairline fracture that will usually heal over time).
Studies have shown that people can get neck injuries even in low speed impacts. That being said, juries (and insurance adjusters) have a hard time believing that low speed impacts can cause neck fractures. Truth be told, you generally need to have significant property damage to convince most people the impact caused a fracture. If an x-ray or MRI film shows a definite fracture, that can go a long way to convincing an adjuster or jury. However, it also helps if you have previous x-ray or MRI showing no evidence of fracture.
Absent previous films, if your medical records are devoid of any previous neck complaints, that also might help convince an adjuster or jury of your fracture. Finally, if you go through your regular medical doctors (rather than attorney referred doctors), that might also help your case.
by Robert Mansour
Robert Mansour is a personal injury lawyer serving Santa Clarita, Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, Castaic and surrounding communities.