Spinal Cord Injuries
The spinal cord can be damaged as the result of a traumatic injury. A spinal cord injury includes damage to any part of the spinal cord or nerves at the end of the spinal canal. In the majority of spinal cord injuries, the backbone or vertebral column pinches the spinal cord, leading to bruising or swelling. Sometimes the spinal cord can even be torn. Once the spinal cord is injured, the nerves from the injury site do not send messages between the brain and the parts of the body that are injured as they did previously.
There are different types and levels of spinal cord injury and different levels of complexity. Severities of spinal cord injuries are measured by completeness. A complete injury occurs when almost all sensory and motor function are lost below the point of damage. An incomplete injury is when there is some feeling and motor function below the damaged area. Spinal cord injury can also result in paralysis of the legs, arms, hands, torso, and pelvic organs. All spinal cord injuries within this range may result in loss of bowel or bladder control, trouble breathing, coughing, or clearing secretions from the lungs, loss of movement and sensation, changes in sexual function, as well as pain and intense stinging sensations. These symptoms lead to complications with the circulatory system, respiratory system, and affect sexual health and general enjoyment of life. Emergency symptoms that occur immediately after a spinal cord injury include difficulty walking and balancing, impaired breathing, numbness in the extremities, weakness or paralysis, a warped neck or back, and loss of bowel control. However, any damage to the spinal cord is a very complex injury and requires treatment with spinal specialists and neurologists/neurosurgeons to try to achieve the greatest amount of functioning possible.
The leading causes of spinal cord injury include car and motorcycle accidents, falls, assault and battery, sports and recreation, and alcohol use. While the initial injury is a result of one of these events, ensuing damage often happens over time because of inflammation, swelling, fluid backup, and bleeding around the spinal cord. There are several factors that put people at heightened risk of spinal cord injury. For example, men are twice as likely to incur a spinal cord injury as women. Also, people between the ages of 16 and 30 and people over the age of 65 are at a higher risk of suffering from a spinal cord injury.
Suffering from a spinal cord injury can affect every aspect of your life. If you believe you have suffered from a spinal cord injury, it is essential that you seek medical help. If this injury happened at work, and has had serious consequences for you and your loved ones, please contact us today. Our firm understands the many aspects of workers compensation injuries. Our team of attorneys and paralegals are committed to achieving our clients’ goals and protecting their rights. We will work diligently to build a strong case on your behalf. Call today for a free initial consultation at (305)539-9000.