There are so many ways that personal injury can impact our lives. The most obvious include car accidents, bike accidents and falls. These incidents can take place over a matter of seconds but impact the injured party for a lifetime, especially in the case of severe injuries such as spinal cord injuries.
The spinal cord is a long tube-like part of the body that extends from the brain stem right down to the bottom of the spine. It is essential to the smooth running of the body, as it passes messages from the brain down to the torso and the limbs. It also controls reflexes, such as the subconscious knee-jerk reaction. As it’s both so important and so fragile, the spinal cord is protected by bone in the same way that the brain is protected by the skull. The spinal cord is surrounded by a protective column of bone, known as the spinal column, which is made up of vertebrae. This does a great job at protecting this essential part of the nervous system, but it can be damaged.
Spinal cord injuries are generally the result of extreme trauma and impact to the back. If the spine itself is injured, such as through a fracture to vertebrae, it may expose the spinal cord. Back bones may also be displaced through dislocation. If any part of the spinal cord is exposed, it can be vulnerable to injury. This may be caused by impact to the spinal cord directly or by an injured or dislocated vertebra impacting the cord. A foreign body may also become lodged in the spinal cord, potentially severing it.
The severity of these injuries depends on how much the spinal cord is damaged and where. If the spinal cord suffers a minor injury, the patient may experience tingling or slight numbness from that point downwards. If the spinal cord is injured seriously, or even partially severed, a patient may lose all control and feeling in their body below that point. If the cord is damaged above the arms, the result could be quadriplegia, whereby paralysis effects the whole body, including both arms and legs.
As the spinal cord is so fragile and the consequences of injury can be so extreme, spinal cord injuries are among the most expensive personal injuries a person can sustain. The last thing you should have to worry about after such a potentially life-altering injury is paying the bills—particularly if your injury was the fault of another party. At Scranton Law Firm in California, we specialize in seeking compensation for people who have experienced a spinal cord injury. Whether you were involved in a road accident on a bike or in a car, or suffered a fall due to the fault or negligence of someone else, we can assess your spinal injury case and provide you with advice on what to do next.