The spine is one of the most complicated parts of the human body. Made up of a column of 33 separate bones known as vertebrae and the soft tissue (known as intervertebral discs) between them, the spine protects the spinal cord, which is part of the body’s central nervous system. The spine is made up of three curves, the neck, upper back, and lower back, which are vitally important for balance. The bottom of the spine is made up of the sacrum and coccyx, which are four and five pieces of vertebra fused together respectively.
Types of back injury
There are various different types of back injury depending on which part of the back has been displaced, and whether or not nerves have become compressed as a result. Three common injuries are slipped discs, spondylolisthesis, and cervical radiculopathy. A slipped disc is where one of the intervertebral discs becomes slightly displaced and starts protruding from the spine itself, sometimes pressing into surrounding nerves. Spondylolisthesis is where one of the vertebrae itself moves out of place, usually at the bottom of the spine. Cervical radiculopathy is where one of the nerves near the cervical vertebrae (bones of the neck) is compressed.
All back injuries are more common among people who have to perform manual handling as part of their jobs. Unfortunately, a great number of these injuries are caused by a lack of proper training, as knowing how to lift and carry heavy objects properly can prevent even long-term injuries in most cases.
What to if you have received a back injury at work
If you have been injured at work through a lack of proper training, you may be entitled to claim personal injury compensation. According to the Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974, your employer has a duty to protect you at work ‘so far as is reasonably possible,’ and this includes providing you with adequate training and supervision.
For more information about employer negligence, personal injury compensation, and the Health and Safety at Work Act of 1974, call our expert advisors at the Accident Advice Helpline. Our lines are staffed by advisers who will be happy to discuss your personal situation in detail. Call us free on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from a mobile phone.
If you choose to go ahead with a claim, it will usually be done over the phone, and on a ‘no win, no fee’* basis. For a quick guide to your eligibility, consult our 30-second online claim calculator.
Date Published: November 25, 2013
Author: David Brown