A possible spinal cord injury in Texas is an emergency situation that requires immediate attention from trained medical professionals. We at the Cole Law Firm believe that it is crucial for you to know what to do for someone who may have sustained a spinal cord injury. It is also extremely important to do what not to do. Responding inappropriately to a potential spinal cord injury could result in further damage.
Apart from calling 911 to summon first responders to the scene, the most important thing to do, according to the Mayo Clinic, is to keep the patient still. Do not move the patient, and prevent the patient from moving on his or her own. If you can do so without undue motion, you can administer first aid to stop excessive bleeding, etc. Since it is vitally necessary to keep the head and neck still, you can place heavy towels on either side of the head and neck or immobilize them by holding them in place.
The following signs and symptoms definitely indicate an emergency in any case and could point toward a spinal cord injury:
- Neck or back twisted in an odd position
- Breathing impairment
- Extreme back pain or pressure
- Loss of control over the bladder or bowels
- Paralysis, weakness or incoordination of one or more body parts
Nevertheless, the signs of spinal cord injury are not always immediately obvious. Therefore, the safest course is to assume that a trauma patient has injured the spinal cord and take the necessary precautions when administering first aid and waiting for medical personnel. More information about spinal cord injury and its chronic aftereffects is available on our website.