After an auto accident, an individual may have back pain either as a new symptom or baseline back pain that gets much worse. If the pain is new, then obviously it was a result of the trauma. An individual may have a muscle strain or a ligament sprain as a result of the trauma.
With proper treatment and the tincture of time, most individuals will get their pain under control but not quite all.
Problems that can occur from an auto accident are a disc herniation that can lead to sciatica, or a tear in the intervertebral disc can lead to significant back pain as well. This may cause back and or leg pain for weeks to months and in a small percent of cases, will become chronic, necessitating treatment with a car accident doctor.
When a person has back pain prior to the accident, and it gets worse after the accident then It is often a question of whether or not it is a pre-existing condition. Often times it comes down to the personal-injury attorney hiring a doctor to give an opinion on this.
Most degenerative disc disease is not painful. It has been shown that 40% of individuals over the age of 40 have degenerative this disease on an MRI or x-ray and no symptoms at all.
If the car accident irritates the disc and nerve endings become painful as a result, then it is very reasonable that the car accident caused an exacerbation of the underlying degenerative disc disease to where it became symptomatic.
So the case is easy if a person has no pain in the back at all prior to the accident and significant pain afterwards. It gets more complicated when some pain existed before the accident and it gets a lot worse afterwards.