Degenerative Disk Disease Does Not Bar You From Recovering Damages

Insurance companies often – inaccurately – tell injury victims who have preexisting degenerative disk disease that they do not qualify for money damages because their disease was a “preexisting condition” and was not caused by the auto or other accident in dispute. This is simply wrong. If you were injured in an auto accident or other serious accident and you have preexisting degenerative disk disease, then you are entitled to recover money damages for your accident-related injuries and those damages can be substantial. Your preexisting condition makes you vulnerable to increased injury in some types of accidents and it doesn’t nullify your personal injury claims.

Activation or Exacerbation of Preexisting Degenerative Disk Disease in Auto and Other Serious Accidents:


In this video clip, Dwyer Williams Dretke lead litigator Tim Williams talks about preexisting degenerative disk disease. This is a condition that prospective clients frequently ask about when they contact personal injury lawyers after being injured in an accident.

What is Degenerative Disk Disease?

Degeneration of the intervetrebral disk can cause severe pain and interference with one’s daily activities. Disk degeneration is a normal part of aging, and for most people does not cause a problem. As a result of disk degeneration, the disk becomes dehydrated, reducing its ability to act as a shock absorber. This causes a reduction in the space between the vertebrae, and may also cause disks to bulge outward. This degeneration makes people more susceptible to accident or injury, thereby requiring less force to do the same damage to the spine than a younger or more able-bodied person. This is known as a prior infirm condition. Unfortunately, disk degeneration also predisposes a person to disk herniation. Trauma, such as a car collision or a hard fall, is the most common cause of the activation of symptoms caused by degenerative disk disease.

Insurance companies love degenerative disk disease because it gives them an excuse to explain away your post-accident pain. They argue that they shouldn’t have to pay to fix a condition that was already there. It is the pain, however, that is the key. If the traumatic event causes the pain to present or increase, even to the point that a surgery is necessary, the law says that you can recover damages. Only experienced personal accident or injury attorneys know how to defuse the insurance company’s bunk arguments.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident or other serious accident in the state of Oregon, call a personal injury lawyer today. The attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke PC have experience negotiating with insurance companies on behalf of injured clients like you and we can help you recover what you deserve.

If you found this video helpful, feel free to watch the other videos on our website:

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Cervical Fusion

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Annular Tears

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Facet Joint Injury

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Disk Herniation

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Exacerbation of Injury

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