When you've suffered a car accident and are injured, here's how NOT to choose a doctor:
Call the closest chiropractor near your home or work.
Call a physical therapist nearby.
Call the chiropractor with the most Yelp or Google+ reviews.
Call your HMO primary care physician
“Why not?” you may ask.
You are Confusing a Car Accident Injury with Ordinary Neck or Back Pain. They Are Not the Same.
A car accident injury is different than any other injury. It affects various structures in the spine differently than any other type of trauma. The specific injured structure; disc, ligament, nerve, brain, etc. must be documented and properly treated. If not, you will suffer long term consequences. That is a fact.
A general chiropractor, medical doctor or physical therapist has no specialized training in this and will miss many of the injuries and therefore provide substandard care. Almost all of these doctors will eagerly treat an accident case, but they will treat them just as they would any other case of general neck or back pain.
As an example, if certain ligaments are damaged in your neck it will cause your neck curve to flatten. It can also cause your spinal bones to slip too much when moving. What is your general doctor or chiropractor's plan to restore the lost curve? Have they properly documented the fact that a ligament has been damaged? Do they know how? Do they know how to properly assess impairment based on specific x-ray studies? It is my belief that less than 10% of chiropractors can and do routinely do this. It is probably less than 1% of all general medical doctors and therapists who can do this.
Another example is a brain injury. Does your doctor know how to properly recognize and diagnose a concussion and properly grade it? And if they do recognize it, most won't, will they offer any treatment for it? Or like 99% of all doctors, will they say, “it just takes time, there are no treatments for a concussion.” By the way, there ARE treatments medically and scientifically proven to help head injuries. One of them was documented as far back as 1961, but is ignored by most doctors and therapists.
Apart From the Obvious Medical Reasons, There are Also Financial and Legal Ramifications to Consider.
General doctors do not do anything without getting paid, usually up front or at least the prospect of health insurance. Today, many people have huge deductibles to their health insurance; $3,000 up to $9,000 are now common. If you need treatment after a car accident and you see a ordinary chiropractor or medical physician you will be responsible for payment as you go. That can get pricey. And even if you are only paying a small co-pay, remember you are paying for inadequate care.
Most generalist doctors, medical or chiropractic, do not adhere to the rules of courts of law. The notes they take, exam procedures they perform and reports they write may not be admissible in court if the proper documentation is not done. This can lead to problems if it becomes necessary to provide testimony at trial. And in fact, most doctors will not appear in court on your behalf because they do not want to be involved in the legal aspect of your case.
A doctor who is a specialist in car accident whiplash injury
A doctor who has many references and reviews specific to car accidents
A doctor who can show you exactly where your damage is and how it can be fixed
A doctor who is a specialist in brain injury from car accidents
A doctor who will assist you in finances so that you do not pay out of pocket
A doctor who has a network of other doctors, imaging centers and lawyers to assist you with your case
All of These Factors are More Important Than Who is Nearby, Who is in Your Network or Merely Has a Lot of Reviews for General Conditions.
Car accident injuries require a specialist who can properly diagnose your specific problem, provide the correct treatment to fix your spine or brain condition, and assist you in securing treatment at no up front cost and the process of filing your claim. Dr Barry Marks Chiropractor is a car accident injury specialist who fulfills all these criteria.