Whiplash Vision Problems

Around half of patients with chronic whiplash associated disorders are estimated to experience vision related issues like poor reading concentration, light sensitivity, visual fatigue, and eye strain. Whiplash vision problems are rare, but they can happen, and naturally it can be scary for people to experience. Today, we will be looking at why this is and what can be done for patients.

How Whiplash Can Affect Vision

The control of my movement depends on the position of the head in space, and the head position depends on the integration of a few sub systems which include the vestibular system, visual system, and the proprioceptive system of the cervical spine. The principal source of cervical afferent information comes from the mechanoreceptors in the upper cervical spine. This is especially apparent in the deep upper cervical muscles where the density of spindles is much higher compared to the other spinal regions. Whiplash disorder usually involves injury to the upper cervical region, which means that sensory motor control is usually disturbed.

Vision Whiplash Symptoms Sometimes Experienced

This can affect eye movement control and lead to symptoms such as nystagmus, dizziness, and balance deficits. Three Distinct movement tests are used to assess whiplash disorder. These include: eye stabilization reflexes, smooth pursuit eye movements, and head eye coordination. Any positive findings on these tests may suggest injury in the upper cervical region. This can be confirmed after an exam.

Once doctors establish a diagnosis, treatment includes application of manual therapies as well as at home exercises to perform on the deep and superficial cervical muscles.

A Whiplash Vision Problem Case Study

A case of a 22-year-old female who endured a concussion and whiplash disorder with impaired eye movement in a high-speed collision was reviewed. Her treatment began two days after the injury which involved mobilization of the cervical and thoracic spine, manual cervical traction, and soft tissue therapies. The patient also was trained on how to do these exercises at home. After one clinic visit and four days of at home exercises, her post concussive symptoms improved. These included dizziness and balance dysfunctions. She continued experiencing blurred vision with body rotation and reduced cervical arrow ends with muscle hypertonicity, both resolved after four additional visits and continuation of daily exercise.

Guidelines suggest that chiropractic care is a wonderful first choice of treatment for whiplash associated disorders. Treatment may include a multi modal approach to restore normal function to the spine and other areas of the body.

How Warwick Chiropractic Can Help

As one of the leading accident doctors in Lacey WA and Thurston County, we have helped countless accident victims to recover properly. We also provide all relevant medical documentation and information relating to the accident to help patients with any insurance claims they may persue.

But getting to proper health is paramount and we have well over 600 google 5-star reviews from happy and pain free(er) patients. We are walk in friendly, so if you’ve been in an accident and don’t know what to do, come and see us for an examination and any treatment and we can help you.

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