Whiplash – Recognizing Long-Term Symptoms

July 24, 2014 in Our News & Bulletins by Integrity Rehab

Nationwide, an estimated 1/3 of people who suffer whiplash injuries continue to have symptoms even three years after their accidents.   Common complaints include neck pain, shoulder symptoms, headaches, problems with vision, dizziness, difficulty reading, and problems with concentration.

Why do so many people experience symptoms for so long?  One possible reason is that many people underestimate the seriousness of acceleration/deceleration injuries to the spine. They take a wait and see approach – waiting to see if everything gets better on its own using little more than pain meds to help with the wait.

Studies show whiplash recovery is best when physical therapy starts within 96 hours of the injury.  Integrity Rehab + Home Health can often schedule physical therapy evaluations within 24 hours of receiving the referral from a doctor. Physical therapy can help guide the healing process to ensure that healing tissues lay down in patterns that promote proper function and maximum range of motion.  However, even patients who have suffered with off-and-on symptoms for years can make good progress with thorough rehabilitation techniques.  If you are still suffering with symptoms of trauma to your spine from a few years back, we can set up a treatment program to meet your needs.


Sources: Rosenfeld M, Gunnarsson R, Borenstein P. Early intervention in whiplash-associated disorders. Spine, 2000, 25 (14): 1782-87

Rosenfeld M, Seferiadis A, Carlsson UJ, et al. Active intervention in patients with whiplash associated disorders improves long term prognosis. A randomized controlled clinical trial. Spine, 2003, 28: 2491-2498

Long Term Whiplash