Treatment of neck strain and whiplash

Effective treatment with gold bead implantation

Chronic neck pain after whiplash injury (whiplash syndrome)

The most common type of whiplash injury occurs in a rear-end collision (i.e. when a vehicle crashes into the one in front of it). Whiplash injuries are also seen in patients when damaging the head by jumping at the shallow end of a swimming pooling or other violent collisions, e.g. in sports.

The more serious neck injuries after whiplash can be long-lasting and require great patience from the patient before the right treatment is found.

In The Gold Clinic we have good experience in treating chronic neck pain caused by whiplash injury using gold bead implantation implanting tiny 24-carat gold pieces in the neck. The gold beads act as a kind of permanent acupuncture. Our results show that the vast majority of our patients experience long-lasting or permanent pain relief or freedom from pain after a single treatment. Gold bead implantation is also used by many veterinarians in the US and Europe to treat joint pain in dogs and other pets.

We take a closer look at the treatment below:


It was for me truly a miracle

I got gold in my neck and lower back in 1998 and have been fine ever since. You gave me my old life back. That was truly a miracle for me. Now suddenly I could do everything again, where for years I had just had pain.

Anders, 77 years old

How is whiplash and neck strain treated?

Acute injuries on muscles and ligaments after whiplash typically take 4-6 weeks to heal. It is the subsequent chronic tension in the neck muscles that causes chronic neck pain.

Treatment of pain from a whiplash injury should aim at releasing this tension in the neck muscles using various therapies:

  • Acupuncture
  • Gold bead implantation
  • Chiropractic care
  • Massage
  • Painkillers (paracetamol and NSAIDs)
  • Exercise therapy with movement of the neck.

Treatment of the newly-onset Whiplash and neck strain (the first few months)

Information on how to get going and return to normal daily activities as soon as possible seems to be most important in preventing chronic pain after a whiplash injury. It is very important to start using the neck normally as soon as possible to avoid severe muscle contractions and that the pain becomes chronic.

In the first few months after the whiplash injury, exercise therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic care and massage can be effective in reducing tension and pain in the neck. Unfortunately, the effect of these treatments diminishes over time the longer the pain has lasted. Hence, these treatments cannot be recommended for patients with chronic pain after a Whiplash injury because they do not provide long-term pain relief. Instead more effective treatments should be used with long-term effect, such as gold bead implantation.

Painkillers may be needed to complement the above mentioned treatments to help with exercise therapy and movement of the neck, which is often stiff due to muscle tension.

Treatment of chronic neck pain from a whiplash injury (duration over ½-1 year)

Exercise therapy is important throughout the process to avoid that the muscles of the neck and shoulders gets too stiff and to avoid aggravation of muscle pain over time.

For patients with chronic neck pain with or without tension headache and/or paresthesia to the arms and hands that has lasted longer than 6-12 months, we recommend gold bead implantation.

Gold bead implantation is a highly effective treatment that is scientifically proven to help most of our patients with chronic neck pain, many of whom become either permanently pain-free or significantly pain relieved. The treatment is carried out under local anaesthetic and involves implanting tiny 24-carat gold pieces along the surface of the backbones via thin needles. The method has been used in our clinic since 1996 in humans and in many animal hospitals around the world since the 1980s to treat joint pain in dogs and other pets.

You’ll find more information about gold bead implantation here. You can also find testimonials and success stories from our patients here.

Below, we’ll take a closer look at what whiplash is, how whiplash injuries occur, symptoms and the prognosis without treatment.

How common is whiplash?

Based on studies in Sweden and Norway, the frequency of the chronic neck pain from a whiplash injury is 1-2 new cases per 1000 inhabitants per year.

The vast majority of patients only experience neck pain for a short while after the injury, but 5-20% get chronic neck pain.


It's great to be able to sleep again after years of pain

I am very happy and grateful because the pain in my neck and back is gone. I can sleep at night without feeling knives and stitches in my back. It’s great getting a good night’s sleep again after years of pain. It makes my zest for life return. Have been on horseback in the beautiful autumn. From the forest hilltop overlooking the lake, both Gilvi and I sent many grateful thoughts to you at the clinic.

Merete, 59 years old

What is a whiplash injury (neck strain)?

Whiplash was originally the term for a fast acceleration/deceleration of the neck (the mechanism of injury), causing damages to muscle fibres, joints, ligaments, nerve tissue and (rarely) bone structures in the cervical spine.

However, the term ‘whiplash’ today is as often used to describe the discomfort, pain and damages associated with this type of injury, rather than the mechanism of injury.

Whiplash is typically associated with injury and pain from the neck and head. The injury often happens in a rear-end collision (i.e. when a vehicle crashes into the one in front of it) causing an overstretching of muscles, tendons and joints in the cervical spine. This causes a neck sprain. As with any other sprains, the damaged tissue leads to swelling, stiffness and pain.

How does a whiplash injury occur?

Whiplash injuries are often associated with road traffic injuries (especially rear-end collisions), but whiplash injuries can occur in many other ways – for example, from falls and jumping headfirst into shallow water.

The risk of having a whiplash injury increases when the injured person is unprepared for the collision, i.e. that the person didn’t tense up the neck muscles before the collision, thus reducing the violent movement of the neck that causes the injury.

The reason why some people experience serious health problems after a whiplash injury, while others do not, even though they have been exposed to the same impact, is not known for sure. What causes the discomfort is also not known with certainty, as there is rarely anything to detect on an X-ray, CT or MRI scan.

However, some studies of the neck in patients who have had a whiplash injury reveal microscopic damage to the vertebral bodies, intervertebral discs, spinal cord structure and surrounding soft tissue that is not revealed by conventional imaging techniques. These injuries might differ from person to person and cause different symptoms in different individuals who have been in a car accident. However, these injuries usually heal within 4-6 weeks.

Statistically, age, sex and psychosocial circumstances as well as the position in the car and posture of the neck at the time of collision also seem to play an important role and influence who gets chronic neck pain and who do not after a car accident. Hence, multiple factors influence the outcome and prognosis after the injury. Women aged 25-40 are more likely to suffer from chronic neck pain after a car accident.

There are many unknown circumstances when it comes to pain after a whiplash injury and this pain condition might also have a lot of different symptoms and signs which can be difficult to explain, particularly when the impact has been at lower speeds (low energy trauma). However, the symptoms are real. In our clinic, we treat patients who suffer from whiplash injuries using gold bead implantation. The treatment helps most of our patients and some experience significant pain relief and even become pain free after a single gold bead implantation.


Very satisfied

I have been with you about 14 years ago for gold treatment in the neck. This treatment has been of great benefit to me and I am still pain free.
I just wanted to tell you that my back is so much better and that I am almost pain free👏🏻👏🏻
When I’m very active I can sometimes have pain in my hips and a bit down my leg, but otherwise it’s perfectly fine👍

Betina, 58 years old

Degrees of the injury in patients with Whiplash

Whiplash injuries (Whiplash Associated Disorder) are categorised according to an international scale ranging from 0-4.

0 means no discomfort and 4 means that there is an actual fracture:

  • Grade 1: No restriction of movement, no ligamentous damage, no neurological sequelae.
  • Grade 2: Some limitation of range of motion, no ligamentous damage, no neurological sequelae.
  • Grade 3: Some limitation of range of motion, ligamentous injury, possibly neurological sequelae.
  • Grade 4: Marked limitation of range of motion, ligamentous instability, neurological sequelae, possible bone fracture or dislocation of disc.

Neurological sequelae can be missing or weak reflexes, reduced strength or sensory disturbances in the arms.

Grades 1 and 2 are by far the most common. If grade 3 or 4 is suspected, at least an X-ray of the cervical spine should be made, but usually also a CT scan of the neck and possibly the brain.

Symptoms after a whiplash injury

After a whiplash injury with forceful acceleration/deceleration of the head, most patients will experience increasing neck pain and stiffness after a few hours/days after the accident. The pain can radiate to the head and out into the arms. In addition, there may be varying degrees of dizziness, tingling and prickling in the arms and fingers, ringing in the ears, difficulty swallowing, difficulty concentrating and sleeping.
These signs will disappear completely within a few weeks or months in the majority of patients.

However, about 10% will have more chronic symptoms. The pain can then change character and become deeper or burning – and spread to other muscle groups. In most cases, these symptoms affect the ability to work. Two out of three get tension headaches, which can occur occasionally or on a more frequent daily basis. In patients with persistant compains after a whiplash injury, memory impairment, impaired concentration and learning ability are also seen.

Hence, the complains in patients who have had a whiplash injury very in severity from mild, transient discomfort to prolonged periods of severe discomfort and disability, to the most severe cases of fractured cervical vertebrae or ligaments.

The wide range of symptoms is termed “Whiplash Associated Disorders” (WAD). This describes the multitude of symptom associated with whiplash injuries.

The classic symptoms of whiplash injuries are:

  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Tingling or numbness in the arms
  • Tenderness or pain in the shoulder, upper back or arms
  • Reduced strength in arms and hands
  • Balance problems/dizziness
  • Tension headache
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Cognitive problems – memory and concentration difficulties
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus) and hearing loss
  • Chronic muscle pain syndrome
  • Jaw pain
  • Blurred vision and difficulties reading
  • Sleep disorders
  • Palpitations

Gold bead implantation has completely changed my life

“I had severe pain in my back – very severe pain. I had home care eight times a day. My pain was terrible and I had no quality of life,” says Lillian, who had surgery for a slipped disc in 2003.
The pain got worse a year and a half ago, when she was admitted to a local hospital in Denmark. “My aunt had a gold bead implantation a few years ago and recommended that I tried this treatment for my back pain. […]
Gold bead implantation has completely changed my life,” Lillian says today.

Listen to Lillian’s story in the video here.

Lillian, 52 years old

How is the pain condition diagnosed?

The neck injury cannot be seen on X-rays, CT or MRI scans, except in the rare cases of neck fractures or severe ligament damage.

The diagnosis is therefore based on the mechanism of injury and symptoms.

In our clinic, the neck is examined by a clinical examination with an assessment of the range of motion in the neck. The examination is used when assessing where to implant the tiny 24-carat gold beads.


I have no back pain anymore

Just a nice feedback…
The first few days after my gold treatment, I was a little tired – BUT on the 11th of December I just felt fantastic.

I haven’t had any back pain since the 11th of December and we just had a visit from our son and daughter-in-law and our lovely grandchildren for 10 days during Christmas. I’ve danced, jumped and played with my grandchildren – well, it’s just been great.

Kaj, 66 years old

Can the pain get worse over time?

Without treatment, yes unfortunately! However, implanting tiny 24-carat gold beads (gold bead implantation) along the cervical spine, we have helped thousands of patients suffering from chronic neck pain and other chronic pain conditions since 1996 in our clinic in Denmark. The gold bead implants are a permanent form of acupuncture. The treatment helps the vast majority of our patients many of whom experience long-term pain relief and many become completely free of pain after a single gold bead implantation. In addition, gold bead implantation has been used by veterinarians to treat chronic joint pain in dogs and other pets since the 1980s in many animal hospitals in both the US and Europe.

In patients with neck pain after a whiplash injury, the nervous system might overreact causing the pain to become chronic and reducing the threshold for experiencing pain. Sometimes the pain worsens and spreads to the entire neck and shoulder area, radiates to the arms and causes tension headache.

The worsening of pain occurs when trigger points develop in the neck, shoulder and back muscles and become increasingly tense over time. In severe chronic pain after a whiplash injury, muscle pain plays a crucial role.

Hence, most patients with whiplash experience a worsening of pain with neck movement and stiffness of the neck as trigger points in the muscles get activated with movement.


I am deeply grateful

I had a lot of pain in my lower back and my pain had a negative effect on my quality of life. I had two treatments where gold beads were implanted in my back.

I have the best retirement job in the world, so I walk every day between 10 and 15 km. After my gold treatments, I never experience any back pain (only sore feet!). I sleep pretty well at night and feel just amazing thanks to the gold implants in my lower back.

I am deeply grateful for your efforts many years ago.

Many thanks, Susanne (now jumping around like a spring hare - or almost)

Prognosis and complications of whiplash without treatment

Most patients become pain-free within some few weeks. However, a small percentage patients develop chronic symptoms that can last several years, and in some cases persist throughout life, without proper treatment.

Fatigue, headaches and cognitive problems such as sleep disturbances, irritability, difficulty concentrating and memory problems, are often seen.

Complications of whiplash can also include reduced work capacity and frequent sick leave.

When the neck pain lasts for several years, it is usually because trigger points in the muscles have developed. This is called a chronic myofascial pain syndrome and can be treated with gold bead implantation with significant pain relief (we’ll discuss this below).


I can't believe I have no more pain

I want to tell you how my “gold adventure” went.
It’s incredible! I have no pain anymore. When the local anaesthetic disappeared, I couldn’t sit, only lie on my side. The next morning the pain in my back was gone, the slipped disc still hurt, but it only lasted a few days, then it was ok too.
Many many thanks

Birthe, 52 years old

What can you do yourself?

  • Don’t be nervous about moving your neck after a whiplash injury. There is nothing that can break in your neck with normal neck movements and everyday use of the neck. Ligaments cannot be damaged, bones cannot break and scar tissue cannot break up.
  • Make sure to turn and move your neck daily and do light neck exercises, possibly under the instruction of a physiotherapist. It’s a good idea to get started with neck exercises as soon as possible, but it mustn’t hurt. Therefore, start gently to avoid worsening of pain with neck movement.
  • If you experience pain, it is important that you take painkillers, possibly before exercising or at certain times during the day to relieve pain. Not moveing your neck at all can cause the pain to aggravate and become chronic.
  • Avoid being bedridden or wearing a neck brace if nothing is broken. Studies show that the condition can be prolonged if a neck brace is used beyond the first 48 hours.
  • Go to work normally, even if you are in pain. Work does not hurt the neck. On the contrary, if you do not return to work quickly, you risk long-term sick leave.
  • As a general rule of thumb, you should experience significant improvement in your symptoms by doing daily neck exercises. The effect of exercise therapy, possibly combined with acupuncture, massage or chiropractic care, should occur within the first 3 to 6 months. The vast majority of patients become pain-free after a short time, but unfortunately 5-20% suffer from long-term chronic neck pain after the injury.
  • If you are not experiencing any noteworthy effect from exercise therapy, acupuncture, massage or chiropractic care, it is important to try more effective treatments such as gold bead implantation, which has been scientifically proven to provide significant painrelief in patients with chronic neck pain.

At our clinic, we work exclusively to treat people with chronic pain from joints and muscles. We are ready to help you.

Gold bead implantation for whiplash

Gold bead implantation is used for all kinds of pain conditions, including chronic neck pain after a whiplash injury, pain due to osteoarthritis and herniated discs, as well as chronic musculoskeletal pain. About 80% of our patients experience permanent pain relief after a single treatment. This means that the majority of our patients can reduce or completely phase out any pain medication. Some of our patients even become completely pain-free.

We generally have good experience of treating people who suffer from chronic neck pain after a whiplash accident.

Some of our patients even rapport about long-lasting effect of the treatment 15-20 years after their treatment.

Read the testimonials and success stories of our patients here.

Through scientific studies, we have documented the effect on patients with chronic neck pain.

A treatment is done under local anaesthetic, Thereafter, the gold beads are implanted on the acupuncture points along the cervical spine. The 24-carat gold beads are very tiny, about the size of a pinhead, and provide a long-term stimulation of the points.
Treatment with gold beads is therefore a gentle and harmless procedure which doesn’t require any hospitalization or rehabilitation after the procedure. I.e. you can take home again after the procedure, which takes less than an hour. The pain-relieving effect occurs in the majority of our patients after 2-3 months and is long-lasting. In patients who also suffer from tension headache, we usually see both an effect on neck pain and tension headache, which is relieved or disappears completely.

The technique has been used in the clinic on humans since 1996 and by veterinarians since the 1980s on dogs and other pets, with good results.

Read more about gold bead implantation here.


I can sleep again without pain

Thank you very much for a wonderful and pleasant experience I had with you last Thursday, when I had gold implanted in my back. Yesterday, for the first time in about 3 years, I was able to vacuum our entire 325m2 house without breaks, and without having to lie down for the rest of the day. My back got a little tired, but I didn’t have severe aggravated pain like I used to. For the first time in over a year and a half, I slept from 11pm to 7am without having to get up 3-4 times to take pills. Getting a good night’s sleep was just amazing.

Christina, 39 years old

Before implantation of gold beads:

To be considered for a our chronic pain treatment with gold implants, please do as follows:

  1. Contact the clinic to make an appointment (you’ll find our contact informations here). You can also contact us if you need to know more about the treatment before you decide to book an appointment.
  2. We need to see X-ray or CT- /MRI scanning images of the painful joint or painful area prior to your gold bead implantation. Your X-ray or CT-/MRI scanning should not be older than 2 years.
  3. You can always contact the department where you have had the examination. They can send you the images or description of the X-ray or CT- /MRI scanning The department is obliged to send you the images.
  4. Please send us the X-ray images in advance of your consultation.
  5. If you are taking anticoagulants, you should pause the medication some few days prior to your gold treatment. Always make sure to consult with us regarding any medications that you might take prior to your gold treatment. Please let us know if you take any kind of medication when you book your appointment.
  6. Please bring a relative or friend to transport you home after your gold bead implantation. We advise you not to driving your car for some few hours after your treatment due to the local anaesthetic.

Please, let's talk.

Our specialists have used gold implants for pain relief of chronic pain since 1996. Hence, we’re the clinic with most experience treating long-term and chronic pain in humans with gold beads. Please, let’s get in touch if you want to know more about the treatment.

Hans Kjerkegaard

Doctor Hans Kjerkegaard

Læge Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Doctor Ulrik Kjerkegaard

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Gold bead implantation

Everything you need to know about chronic paint treatment with gold implants (gold bead implantation). We have used this method since 1996 for treating chronic pain and sore joints in humans. Hence, our doctors are the most experienced in Europe.


With time, we have received a lot of positive feedback from our patients. Some of our patients have no pain after their treatment with gold beads. Hence, the treatment might reduce pain and improve quality of life.

Meet our doctors

Hans Kjerkegaard

Hans Kryger Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Aarhus), Denmark

Læge Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Ulrik Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Aarhus), Denmark

Hans Kjerkegaard

Hans Kryger Kjerkegaard

Doctor, MD,
Risskov (Århus), Denmark

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