A new study that recently came to the attention of our car accident lawyers says that the level of pain that you experience after a car crash may depend more on your genetic makeup than the crash itself.
According to the International Association for the Study of Pain, it is an unpleasant experience connected with potential or actual damage of tissues that determines the amount of pain you may experience. Pain could also be present when there is no detectable or direct stimulus or physical damage.
Data was collected from nearly 950 adults who were victims of car crashes by scientists from the University of North Carolina. They found that the inherited variations in the genes affected the victims’ response to the intensity of the pain immediately after the accident and also six weeks following the accident.
There were earlier studies which suggested that pain caused by a car accident wasn’t only the result of trauma-caused tissue damage, but also physiologic systems that affect the response of the body to the collision. The participants in the research each donated a blood sample following treatment in the emergency room of a hospital where they were evaluated for the severity and extent of their pain. This evaluation was also carried out after six weeks.
In the first study the role of the neurotransmitter dopamine was examined. Dopamine helps regulate the processing of the pain. Some genetic variants connected with dopamine receptor 2 were found to contribute to the severity of the pain felt immediately after the accident. The next study analyzed the role played by the hypothalamic-pituitary adrenal axis, a hormonal system that enables the regulation of the body’s response to traumatic events. The study discovered that the gene contributed to a 20 percent greater risk of severe or moderate neck pain six weeks following a collision. It also caused more body pain.
The test proved that the physiological processes activated in the body following a traumatic event such as an auto accident did contribute to the existence of persistent pain. This is quite a revelation, since patients experiencing chronic pain following a car crash are viewed with suspicion and not provided the required treatment since test reports do not always provide findings that can be correlated with the pain. These studies prove that there is a total biological process behind the pain which cannot be analyzed with an MRI scan or an X-ray. The pain need not always be related to a muscle tear or broken bone.
The tests could pave the way for new pain treatment concepts customized
to the physiological process of each patient, which could help considerably
alleviate their suffering. The author of these studies says that these
findings are only the initial steps into the study of individualized pain
care. However these are quite vital steps since the importance and influence
of pain biology has been clearly identified as well as how that process
varies from individual to individual.
Such revolutionary studies need to be encouraged in order to better understand and treat victims of auto accidents that happen frequently on American roads. These studies may help open the door for new pain treatments that help car crash victims.
Most of the time, pain is detected through standard test such as MRI’s or X-rays, but the biology of pain may reveal even more. Our car accident attorneys support advancements aimed at delivering better patient care to accident victims.