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New Study Finds Whiplash May Cause Anatomical Changes to Brain

While it has long been known that whiplash can cause injuries to the cervical spine, a new study published in a recent issue of the journal Brain Injury shows that whiplash may also cause anatomical changes to the brain.

According to Dr. Ezriel E. Kornel, M.D., F.A.C.S., a principal with Brain & Spine Surgeons of New York in White Plains, and a co-author of the Brain Injury article, “The study examined the MRI scans of 1200 neck pain patients and found that those patients suffering from whiplash were more likely to have anatomical changes to the brain, specifically, a herniation of the brain called Chiari malformation, in which the bottom part of the brain (the cerebellum) dips through an opening in the base of the skull.”

This condition can be quite painful and endanger the patient’s health, with symptoms that may include headaches, neck pain, upper extremity numbness and tingling, and weakness. In a few cases, there can also be lower extremity weakness and brain dysfunction. Dr. Kornel advises anyone suffering from whiplash to see a physician immediately.

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