Spinal Cord Injuries Cause Life-Long Problems
Spinal cord injuries result from many types of accidents. Some of these accidents are preventable. Whether the accident that caused your injury was a car accident, medical malpractice, or nursing home negligence, your life has changed and not for the better.
Spinal cord injuries cause permanent impairment resulting in long-term negative impacts on your life. While all spinal cord injuries are serious, some have more severe and permanent impacts than others. Regardless of the severity of your injury, your life has changed and you deserve compensation from the negligent party.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
While some spinal cord injuries are more severe than others, all should be taken seriously. The most serious result in death but there are many types of spinal cord injuries where death is not imminent. Spinal cord injuries are categorized by their location on the spine. From closest to the neck to furthest, they are:
- C-1 to C-4 – These can be some of the most severe spinal cord injuries. Many times, any injury above the C-4 requires a ventilator for the person to breathe.
- C-5 – Injuries at this point in the spine limit control and use of hands and wrists but generally still allow basic arm movements.
- C-6 – The injuries generally allow wrist control but not hands.
- C-7 and T-1 – Allow arm movement but often have problems controlling the hand and fingers.
- T-1 to T-8 – These injuries often result in paraplegia causing limited mobility from the waist down.
- T-9 to T-12 – The most minor of injuries to the spinal cord, these injuries result in some limited or difficult function of extremities but do not render the person immobile.
There’s a difference between a spinal cord injury and a spine injury. A spinal cord injury consists of damage to the spinal cord itself (the bundle of nerves that runs through the middle of the vertebrae), while a spine injury is damage or break to the vertebral bones. While a spine injury can result in and exacerbate a spinal cord injury, they are separate injuries.
The most devastating part about spinal cord injuries is that there is, for now, no “cure.” While your function can improve after your injury, it is unlikely your health will recover to its state prior to the injury. As a result, your life circumstances change dramatically.
With those changes come costs. Since you played no part in your injury, you should not bear any of the responsibility for the costs associated with your injury. To make sure you have the best chance possible of recovering what you need to survive, you deserve to have a skilled and experienced spinal cord personal injury lawyer fighting for you.
Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injury causes vary greatly. They include:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Slip and fall
- Construction accidents
- Medical malpractice
- Pedestrian accidents
- Bicycle accidents
Living with a spinal cord injury requires a lifestyle change, both for the injured person and the person’s family and caretakers. People with spinal cord injuries may need extra care because they have limited or no use of some or all of their extremities. This results in physical, emotional, and financial burdens on people who never planned for them and may find it difficult to adjust their lives without significant help.
Types of Damages Available
Getting compensation from the person or entity that caused your spinal cord injury can be a complex process. The amount of money due to you depends upon a variety of factors, which can include:
- Past, present, and future medical bills
- Lost wages
- Loss of companionship
- Decreased earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Rehabilitation costs
After your injury, you may receive a call from an insurance adjuster representing the interests of the party who has liability to you. The adjuster’s role is to settle your case for as little money as possible. You can be certain that whatever an adjuster offers is not nearly the amount of money you deserve. Still, it’s tempting to take the money. You are out of work, your costs are piling up, and you need cash. That is what the insurance company is counting on, at least, when it extends a quick settlement offer.
Don’t take it.
If you do, it most likely won’t be enough money to cover your long-term financial needs and you’ll end up having to pay out of pocket for injuries you played no part in causing. Any settlement will also come with a requirement that you promise never to sue the insurance company or its policy-holder in the future for your injury. This is known as a “release” and it has a major impact on your rights.
An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to provide you with an accurate calculation of the damages you deserve to recover. Working with an attorney gives you the opportunity to collect what you need from the party who caused your injuries. We fight to protect your rights so you can focus on your recovery.
Contact a Trusted Personal Injury Lawyer
When you’ve suffered a spinal cord injury, you’ve lost mobility but you haven’t lost your rights. You need an aggressive advocate to fight for you. Look for someone with the experience and resources to recover the compensation you deserve so you don’t have to pay a dime out of your own pocket. Your health should be your top priority. Whether your spinal cord injury was caused by a drunk driver, other vehicle accident, a slip and fall, a workplace accident, or medical malpractice, let your spinal injury lawyer focus on the legal complexities of ensuring you get the money you need to make your adjusted life as comfortable as possible.