Every year approximately 11,000 Americans suffer an injury to their spinal cord. Automobile accidents are currently the leading cause of spinal cord injuries. If you or a loved one are suffering from a spinal cord injury, call a Jefferson County spinal cord injury lawyer to discuss whether you have a potential spinal cord injury claim. Consult a compassionate catastrophic injury attorney that could devote the time and resources necessary to achieve a positive outcome for you.
Understanding Spinal Cord Injuries
The spinal cord is a group of nerves within the spine that carries signals between the brain and the body, protected by 33 bones called vertebrae. When the spinal cord is damaged by any means, the signal gets disrupted and can result in severe and life-changing damage to the person affected.
In general, a spinal cord injury can be defined as incomplete or complete. An incomplete spinal cord injury will result in the body losing some, but not necessarily all, ability to send signals back and forth to the brain. Here, the injured person may still be able to function (in a limited capacity) below the injured area of the spine. However, a complete spinal cord injury refers to when the spinal cord has been so damaged that the body will become paralyzed, no longer able to function below the point of injury.
How Do Spinal Cord Injuries Occur?
Spinal cord injuries will generally occur due to a traumatic injury to the spine. The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center has identified the four leading causes of a spinal cord injury as automobile accidents, falls, violent acts, and sports activities. These four leading causes can be the result of negligence, where the carelessness or recklessness of another caused the accident that resulted in the injury.
However, there are other ways a person may injure their spinal cord as the result of another’s actions, such as in medical malpractice claims. In these situations, a spinal cord injury may be the result of a surgical error or taking unreasonable risks during surgery on the back and neck.
Effects of Spinal Cord Injury
The actual effects of a spinal cord injury go far beyond what the eye can see. Spinal cord injuries are internal injuries, meaning the injured may not have a single bruise on their body but may leave the accident site unable to ever walk again. Not only will a spinal cord injury victim’s physical capabilities be seriously or completely limited, but additional emotional effects will take a serious toll on them and their loved ones.
There are four general types of paralysis injuries that Jefferson County spinal cord lawyers are prepared to represent:
- Paraparesis: Partial paralysis of the lower body
- Paraplegia: Complete paralysis of the lower body
- Quadriparesis: Partial paralysis affecting all four limbs
- Quadriplegia: Complete paralysis of all four limbs
In a typical spinal cord injury claim, the injured party may be compensated for more than general medical expenses. Because these injuries are often permanent and cause life-changing effects, a victim’s damages award may also include compensation for the cost of rehabilitation services, assisted living devices such as wheelchairs or other modifications to their home, or lost wages and potential income. A Jefferson County spinal cord injury lawyer can help an individual pursue compensation.
Working With a Jefferson County Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer
Spinal cord injuries can be caused by another’s negligence, medical malpractice, defective products, or under several other legal theories.
If you or a loved one suffered a serious spinal cord injury at the hands of another, contact a Jefferson County spinal cord injury lawyer today. An adept attorney could work closely with you throughout the entire case, passionately fighting for the justice you seek and compensation you deserve.