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Falls are one of the leading causes of unintentional injuries in the United States, accounting for approximately 8.9 million visits to the emergency department annually (NSC Injury Facts 2011). Most people have a friend or relative who has fallen, or maybe you have fallen yourself. Falls are the second-leading cause of unintentional death in homes and communities, resulting in more than 25,000 fatalities in 2009. The risk of falling, and fall-related problems, rises with age and is a serious issue in homes and communities. Most slip and falls occur with doorways, ramps, uneven surfaces, areas prone to wetness, stairs, or areas of heavy traffic.
Similar to car accident injuries, slip and falls should be carefully evaluated by a highly trained physician or chiropractor. This involves history of the trauma, full medical examination including an evaluation of the neuromuscular system, and diagnostic studies, such as x-ray, CT scan, MRI, and electrodiagnostic evaluation. Your physician should be skilled in their understanding of the mechanics of an accident and post accident symptoms to rule out major pathology such as herniated disc, mild traumatic brain injury, severe joint sprain, and radicular symptoms such as numbness and tingling.
Initially treatment is devised in order to reduce swelling and spasm through the use of specific medications and physiotherapy such as ice, heat, therapeutic ultrasound, physical therapy, chiropractic care, massage, and electric stimulation. Next a progressive rehab protocol will be administered to improve body mechanics and increase active range of motion. If such therapeutic modalities fail in their response, then procedures such as interventional pain management and/or surgical recommendations may be administered in order to reduce loss of function.
Let the Gulf Coast Injury Center medical team help you today!