Within the spine, flexible tissue exists to help cushion the vertebrae as they move. A herniated disk is one of the most typical injuries due to car crashes.
What is a herniated disk? In this situation, the disk may tear, and the gelatinous material within can spill out, putting pressure on the nerves of the spine and causing damage.
What is cauda equina syndrome?
Spine Universe talks about injuries to the back after a crash. Herniated disks, in particular, despite being common, are not life-threatening. However, they may contribute to a potentially life-threatening issue called cauda equina syndrome.
The spinal cord stops around the lumbar portion of the spine rather than extending all the way down. Nerve roots stem from this portion of the spine and stretch to the pelvis organs and the legs. These roots can look like a horse’s tail, which is where the term cauda equina comes from.
How it affects victims
Herniated disks may potentially cut off nerve signals to this area of nerve roots, resulting in cauda equina syndrome.
Saddle anesthesia is one prominent symptom for sufferers, in which the parts of the body that would be touching a saddle go numb. It may also impact bowel and bladder function and movements, along with producing weakness or numbness of lower extremities.
These issues may leave a big mark on the physical and mental well-being of the sufferer, even resulting in potentially life-threatening failure of pelvic organs or mobility.
Chronic dysfunction is possible even with treatment, but the chances are significantly lowered by quick medical treatment.