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Look Out For Long-Term Indications of a Car Accident Injury

Have you ever been involved in a busy sports game and initially felt fine, but experienced significant pain days and weeks later?  The same is true for car accidents.  Even when they seem small at first, these car accidents can have lasting effects that can influence both your work and personal life.  What are some of the long-term indications of a car accident injury? They may range from the psychological to the physical.  

Sometimes, car accidents can lead to back and neck pain, such as pain experienced from whiplash.  Additionally, you may experience abdominal pain and swelling. Sometimes this goes away, but other times, it may be an indication of a very serious problem like internal bleeding. Others may tell you that your personality seems a little "off", or you may have trouble remembering things.  These may be symptoms of a traumatic brain injury.   It is important to watch for these signs in order to gauge your health after a car accident and make sure that you're really okay!

It is important to realize that the symptoms of a car crash injury may not manifest themselves until a few days after an accident, so if you or a loved one are in an automobile accident and have unexplained pain a few days later, car accident injuries may be the cause of your discomfort. For example, the most common way to experience whiplash from an automobile accident is from a rear-end collision.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area.  He takes cases for victims who have been injured as the result of an automobile accident.  For more information on him and his firm, please call his office for a free initial consultation at 814-946-4100.

Chronic Pain: America's Hidden Epidemic

Followers of this blog are familiar with the idea of chronic pain being much more common than you might initially think.  However, you might not realize just how many Americans suffer from chronic pain without taking a look at recent statistics and surveys.

According to a recent Gallup-Healthways poll:

  • about 1 in 2 Americans suffer from some type of chronic pain.
  • 31% of American adults report chronic back/neck pain
  • 26% report a leg/knee condition, and 18% have another type of chronic pain.
  • 47% report 1 or 2 types of the pain listed above 
  • 7% report experiencing all three types of the pain listed above.

When the numbers from the survey were broken down further, it was reported that one in five people between their 40s and 80s experienced recurring pain. Interestingly, reports of chronic pain increased between ages 18 and 59 (from 16% to 37%), but those chronic pain reports stopped increasing once people turned 60.  

These data suggest that the occurrence of chronic pain among the nation's adult population is much higher than most people realize.  Chronic pain is also often caused by a traumatic injury, such as ones that result from a car crash or slip-and-fall.  If you have pain that persists more than 6 months, it is often considered chronic and may require a lifetime of medical care and expenses.  In those situations, it may be prudent to consult with an attorney if you have chronic pain that has resulted from an injury due to the fault of another. 

For more information on Attorney Doug Stoehr and his central Pennsylvania personal injury practice, please visit his website or call him at 814-946-4100.

What Is Adhesion Pain?

Adhesion pain:  chances are that you have not heard of this medical term unless you or a loved one has had very extensive or invasive medical treatments; however, adhesion pain is a very real and painful medical disorder.  Adhesion pain can best be described as pain resulting from internal scar tissue that fuses together, most often in the abdominal region.  Adhesion scars can come not only from surgical procedures, but from injuries that do not require invasive surgery, such as getting hit in the stomach or being in a car accident.  Pain Pathways magazine has reported on this phenomenon in past issues.  Adhesion scars can result in myriad medical complications, including chronic abdominal pain, fusion of internal organs, obstruction of the bowels, and infertility.  Unfortunately, adhesion scars are more complicated to treat and diagnose since they do not appear on medical scans, such as CAT, PET, or x-rays.  Treatment normally involves attending to the symptoms, such as bowel obstruction, and not the actual adhesion scar.  Surgery is available to cut adhesion tissue in the abdominal cavity, but may in fact lead to more scar tissue, so it is not the normal course of action.  As a result of the recognition and diagnosis of adhesion scar pain, some foundations and support networks have been formed around the country for those suffering from adhesion scar pain.

The formation of adhesion scar tissue can occur after a wide variety of accidents and injuries, such as car accidents.  It is very important to monitor your pain and consult with a knowledgeable physician if you suspect that you may have a case of adhesion scar pain, especially if it leads to bowel obstruction or other painful disorders.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area.  For more information on him and his firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

Chronic Pain and Workplace Performance

One of the main problems surrounding symptoms of chronic pain is how it influences every aspect of your life.  Chronic pain is often not a disorder that changes its symptoms or decreases across situations.  Due to this, chronic pain can lead to problems in other aspects of your life, such as socially, athletically, and in workplace performance.

An article by Human Resource Executive Online addressed this problem in one of their online articles.  According to the article, HR professionals have an obligation to look for the signs of chronic pain and approach employees about it when appropriate.  Additionally, these professionals should familiarize themselves with the laws and regulations surrounding disabilities (professionally diagnosed chronic pain is considered both a medical condition and a disability). Workers with chronic pain do have rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act.  The article also acknowledged that chronic pain can carry stigma for the suffer, so HR representatives should be sensitive when broaching the subject.  Many companies also have infrastructure in place to support people with disabilities, so HR representatives should work to try and get those services put in place for the sufferer of chronic pain.   Overall, it is prudent on the part of the employee and HR representative to work together to discuss the medical condition and come to grips with how that will affect their job performance.

Chronic pain is a tricky diagnosis in terms of finding the right medication combination that will work, but will not lead to overmedication.  Working with your physician and seeing what is right for you is the only way to find an effective, realistic pain management treatment.  If you would like more information about chronic pain as it relates to your personal injury claim, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100.

Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer practicing in the western and central Pennsylvania region.  For more information on his firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

Understanding Traumatic Brain Injuries

How much do you really know about traumatic brain injuries?  Although this injury has made many headlines in the news in the past few years, the cause, symptoms, and treatments remain a mystery to many.  Many websites have compiled information about traumatic brain injuries to help educate the general public.  Of these websites is the Model Systems Knowledge Translation Center (MSKTC), which has myriad information relating to traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and burn injuries. For those who may want to educate themselves more on the causes, signs, and treatment of traumatic brain injuries, their website may be a good place to begin.  Click here for the direct link to their TBI page.

If you have recently been in a car crash, it is important to closely monitor your body's response to injury.  This is especially true if you suspect that you have sustained a significant head injury.  If your car accident was due to the fault of another, it may also be time to seek legal action.   If you or a loved one has recently been in a car accident due to the fault of another, please contact Altoona, PA area personal injury attorney Doug Stoehr to set up an initial, free consultation.  His law office can be reached by calling his firm at 814-946-4100.

What Is Adhesion Pain?

Have you heard of adhesion pain before? Chances are that you have not heard of this medical term unless you or a loved one has had very extensive or invasive medical treatments.  However, adhesion pain is a very real and painful medical problem.  So what is the condition, anyway?  Adhesion pain can best be described as "pain resulting from internal scar tissue that fuses together, most often in the abdominal region."  

Curious and want to learn more? Here are some fast facts about adhesion pain (resources from Pain Pathways magazine):

  • Adhesion scars can come not only from surgical procedures, but from injuries that do not require invasive surgery, such as getting hit in the stomach or being in a car accident.  
  • Adhesion scars can result in a serious medical complications, including chronic abdominal pain, fusion of internal organs, obstruction of the bowels, and infertility.
  • Adhesion scars don't not appear on medical scans, such as CAT, PET, or x-rays.  So, that means that they can sometimes be tricky to diagnose!
  • Treatment normally involves attending to the symptoms, and not the actual adhesion scar.  Although surgery is available to cut adhesion tissue, it may actually lead to more scar tissue and potentially worsen the problem. 
  • As a result of the recognition and diagnosis of adhesion scar pain, some foundations and support networks have been formed around the country for those suffering from adhesion scar pain.

The formation of adhesion scar tissue can occur after a wide variety of accidents and injuries, such as car accidents.  It is very important to monitor your pain and consult with a knowledgeable physician if you suspect that you may have a case of adhesion scar pain, especially if it leads to bowel obstruction or other painful disorders.  If you experience adhesion pain as the result of a car accident, it may be time to consult with an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA and serves the central and western Pennsylvania area.  For more information on him and his firm, please call his law firm at 814-946-4100. 

Throwback Thursday: Chronic Pain Researchers Find "Erasing" Chemical?

Talk about an unexpected discovery! Read one of our most unique and thought-provoking Throwback Thursday blog posts below:

Occasionally while investigating a research problem, scientists stumble upon something that they did not expect.  Researchers studying the pathways and treatment of chronic pain had that experience recently.  While studying the genes involved in chronic pain, the scientists discovered a chemical that can erase "memories".  Neuroscientists at McGill University claim that the chemical, with the  acronym ZIP, can selectively wipe out the nervous system's "memory" of chronic pain while still leaving other memories intact.


This chemical may work because pain that lasts more than a few minutes, leaving a permanent memory trace (which is the reasoning behind phantom limb syndrome).  To begin experiments with ZIP, the scientists injected the chemical into the spinal area of rats.  This successfully wiped out pain memories in their hind paws that had become tender and very sensitive from the use of capsacin, the burning chemical in hot peppers.  Although this chemical is in the very early stages of development and may not possibly become a drug for many years, its future is bright and many result in chronic pain relief for thousands of patients. 


Chronic pain is a tricky diagnosis in terms of finding the right medication combination that will work, but will not lead to overmedication.  Working with your physician and seeing what is right for you is the only way to find an effective, realistic pain management treatment.  If you would like more information about this page or central Pennsylvania attorney Doug Stoehr's areas of practice, contact our Altoona, Pennsylvania, law firm by calling 814-946-4100. 

Save the "Ice Skating" For the Rink!

Are you finding yourself slipping, skidding, and sliding on the cold, wet roads and sidewalks?  Slip and fall injuries tend to increase during the winter months, due to an uptick in bad weather, such as sleet, ice, and snow.  These falls may lead to long-lasting and/or painful injuries, such as broken bones, concussions, and loss of consciousness.  Extended damage from such an injury may include chronic pain and nerve damage. Ouch! These injuries are bad by themselves, but may also become an added burden when you have to miss work for an extended period of time. 

Slip and fall injuries may result from improper care or maintenance of outdoor facilities, like sidewalks, driveways, or steps.  Owners may not promptly shovel their sidewalks, pour rock salt on their steps, or fail to perform other types of common and expected winter maintenance measures.  If an injury occurs due to the improper maintenance of such areas, the owners of the property may be liable for the injury.

If you or a loved one has sustained an injury from a slip and fall accident, it might be time to consult with an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA who serves the western and central Pennsylvania area.  For more information on his legal practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

Throwback Thursday: NPR Gets In On The Chronic Pain Game

This week's Throwback Thursday is centering on National Public Radio (NPR)'s coverage of chronic pain.  It's great when a national news source such as NPR can weigh in and provide information about such an important medical phenomenon.  Here's the original article for your viewing pleasure:


Chronic pain is becoming an issue that is swiftly gaining national attention as more physicians are recognizing the disorder as a valid medical condition.  Among the many national news sources that are covering the topic of chronic pain, the National Public Radio is one of them.  NPR recently ran a radio interview covering an area within chronic pain that many patients grapple with:  the fear of addiction to pain medication versus the discomfort of chronic pain.  To read the NPR interview with Judy Foreman, author of "A Nation in Pain", or listen to the audio version, please click here.


Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving Blair and the seven surrounding counties in central Pennsylvania.  He takes cases for clients who are experiencing chronic pain as the result of an injury due to the fault of another.   For more information on his Altoona, PA area firm, please call his office at 814-946-4100 or visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com.

Run Away? Stand Your Ground? What To Do If A Dog Attacks!

Many of us own dogs that are happy, healthy, harmless, and well-adjusted.  They are members of our family, play with our children, and are a part of many important life moments.  However, not all dogs are as friendly as your trusty friend!  Ever year, hundreds of people are severely injured in dog attacks all over the country.  The local division of CBS in Pittsburgh offered up some tips and tricks to keep you safe in the event that you are confronted with a potentially serious and unsafe dog encounter. 

  • Don't make any sudden movements! Neither run away nor towards a dog that looks ready to attack. 
  • Be as calm as you can! The more stressed and scared you get, the more the dog will pick up on it. 
  • Don't look the dog in the eye or scream!
  • When approaching a dog with an owner, always ask before petting if it's okay.  If the owner says yes, allow the dog to smell the back of your hand first.  If they appear angry or on edge, don't put them further. 

In some cases, liability for a dog attack may fall to a landlord.  A landlord may be held liable for injuries by animals owned and maintained by a tenant when the landlord has knowledge of the presence of the dangerous animal, and where he or she has the right to control or remove the animal by retaking possession of the premises. 

If you are bitten by a dog and are seeking damages, your claim for damages based on your injuries or disfigurement will be based on a theory of negligence, and will be very complex.  You need an attorney that has experience in handling the difficulties of these types of claims.   Our law firm will review the facts and analyze the law to provide you with a thorough evaluation of your claims. 

If you or a loved one suffered an injury or disfigurement from a dog bite, please do not hesitate to contact the law office of Attorney Douglas V. Stoehr.  Attorney Doug Stoehr has experience in handling dog bite cases, and will thoroughly evaluate your claim.   Call us today at (814) 946-4100 for a free initial consultation.  

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