Dr. Quigley was an expert witness in the first-ever Zoom auto crash arbitration case here in Massachusetts. It was an exciting event for an auto accident chiropractor to participate in. I was the only health care provider to testify. The auto injury case told the story of a cable lineman who got rear-ended while waiting at a stoplight. The crash had several factors that made it quite severe.
The first was that the victim was caught by surprise. Being caught by surprise is considered by many experts to be the most injurious of the factors in a motor vehicle collision. This is the case because the muscular system has no time to brace and protect the vulnerable tissues of the spine, especially the ligaments and discs.
The next important factor was that the victim was hit from behind. The literature has been quite emphatic about this concept. The spinal structures are much more vulnerable when hit from behind. My view is that most of the time when hit from behind you, do not see them coming and bring the surprise factor more into play. The other aspect is that the injury that occurs in known as an inertial injury. The head stays in place while the body is moved forward creating a pincer effect on the joints of the lower neck causing more injury.
The victim had had a couple of previous motor vehicle accidents prior to this one. When you are born, you come into the world with a set amount of yellow ligaments (elastic, elastin type) and white ligaments (collagen type). When those ligaments are damaged, you body does not heal them just like they were before. They heal with scar tissue which is primarily white, collagen type tissue. The scars are much weaker, more susceptible to re-injury, and up to 10,000x’s more sensitive to pain than healthy tissue. This is why your parents and grandparents say things like: “I can tell when it is going to rain, because my knee, hip, back act up when bad weather comes in.” Therefore because your ligaments are weaker, when you get in the second or worse third or forth accident, you are significantly more likely to be injured.
The victim had a previous cervical disc injury. This is demonstrable evidence that he had previous damage to his spine which again, made it weaker and much more likely to be injured in a subsequent trauma.
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