• Ready for real help?

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Whiplash Attorneys WV

When was Whiplash Injury First Recognized?

Whiplash injury attorneys in WV, as well as whiplash attorneys throughout the United States, likely are unaware of the interesting history of one of this well-known type of injury. Most people associate whiplash injury with automobile accidents. Automobile accidents cause the condition more frequently than anything but, but this was not always the case.

Whiplash injury used to be called “railway spine” in the middle of the 19th century. A study done by a British physician, Dr. Rigler, on accidents related to the Prussian railway system first described the injury. During the early 20th century, the term railway spine became well-known first among the medical community in the UK and later in the U.S.

The condition was recognized among American Navy test pilots during World War I. Pilots would complain of neck pain after piloting planes launched by catapults from ships. The first reported case of railway spine associated with car accidents was in 1919.

The term whiplash was first used in the 1920s during a medical lecture in the United States at the Western Orthopedic Association in San Francisco. The lecturer described the injury as similar to the back and forth, lash-like effect of a whiplash. Hyper flexing of the spine due to stopping or starting too quickly was the accepted cause of the pain. By the 1940s, the term was in popular use by whiplash injury attorneys in WV and elsewhere.

Physical or Mental?

There is a great deal of controversy about the reality of whiplash among the state court and whiplash injury attorneys in WV. The defense attorney and others would likely try and prove the condition is more psychological than physical. There are not a lot of physical symptoms seen on x-rays or signs on the exterior of the body in every case.

The possible psychosomatic roots of whiplash injury date back to when it was still known as railway spine injury. The writings of Sigmund Freud were becoming better known by the late 1800s. The doctors treating railway spine often would refer to Freud’s studies and link the condition to a mental state and not an actual physical injury. Whiplash injury attorneys WV would need to point to an actual physical ailment, however, to win the case for the victim.

Whiplash Injury or Neck Sprain?

Any blow to the head or something that causes your neck to jerk backwards and forwards rapidly can cause whiplash. The movement can strain your neck, resulting aches or pains in that area.

Whiplash injury, however, is not a neck sprain. Neck sprain actually tears the muscles or tendons of the neck. Whiplash strains them. They are easily confused by laymen in that both have the same symptoms and treatment is the same.

Symptoms of Whiplash

Whiplash injury attorneys in WV would use some or all of the physical manifestations below to help win the case:

  • Decreased range of motion in the neck area
  • Pain in the neck area
  • Tenderness
  • Headaches
  • Inability to nod or move your head back and forth
  • Hard or knotted muscles in the neck area

The symptoms may not evident immediately. It could be hours or days before the injured person realizes they have a problem.


Whiplash injury usually goes away of its own accord. Whichever on of the whiplash injury attorneys WV you choose to litigate on your behalf will of course what you to heal. There are several things, however, a person can do to assist in the healing and recovery process:

  • Icing the neck area for 20-30 minutes every 3-4 hours for 2-3 days
  • Use a neck collar
  • Ultrasound
  • Massage

What Are the Legal Remedies for Whiplash Injury?

Proving whiplash injury can be difficult. Whiplash has a bad connotation due to its portrayal in movies and on TV as a condition that is often faked. The controversy about the psychosomatic nature of the condition also adds to the difficulty in making a legal case that is winnable.

Here are some of the actions any of the whiplash injury attorneys WV will tell a person to take in order to help prove a whiplash injury and obtain appropriate compensation:

  • Seek Treatment Immediately: The sooner a doctor has assessed the condition, the sooner you can not only get treatment but can also begin a written record for us in possible litigation.
  • Do Not Self-Diagnose: If involved in an accident, do not say anything or joke about whiplash. Tell the first responders how you feel and let them take appropriate action.
  • File a Claim as Soon as Possible: Don’t wait for a few months or a year. Whiplash injuries often have very short statutes of limitation under state laws.
  • Document All Expenses

Following this advice can help you increase the odds that in a legal proceeding you will win your case.