Health Problems Associated With Spinal Cord Injuries
A spinal cord injury is devastating. It often results in life as a paraplegic or quadriplegic, requiring extensive medical care, therapy and adjusting to a new life.
Many people living with paralysis also commonly suffer from secondary health complications. Depending on the injury, individuals are susceptible to pressure ulcers or bed sores, deep vein thrombosis, sepsis and many other life-threatening health issues.
These can be avoided with the help of seasoned medical professionals on hand to assist. Unfortunately, many doctors, nurses and other health care professionals fail to provide the level of care to victims of spinal cord injuries, causing them unnecessary further injury.
Understanding Different Levels Of Spinal Cord Injuries
A thorough understanding of the degree of a spinal cord or traumatic brain injury may help prepare you and your family for the financial, emotional and physical needs today and in the future years to come.
The spinal cord is located within the shell of the spinal column, known as the vertebrae. The degree of paralysis, loss of bodily function and impairments is determined based on the location of the damaged nerve/vertebrae.
- C1-C4 Vertebrae: Damage to the C1-C4 nerves will result in the most severe impairment. Individuals can expect paralysis of the trunk, both arms, hands and legs. Some individuals may also have trouble breathing or speaking.
- C5-C8 Vertebrae: The C5-C8 vertebrae lie directly underneath the C4 vertebrae. The exact vertebrae affected will depend on an individual’s impairment. However, many people with nerve damage to the C5-C8 vertebrae can expect paralysis to the trunk and legs. Individuals may also experience difficulty moving their arms, wrists and elbows in varying degrees.
- Midback T1-T12 Vertebrae: The T1-T12 vertebrae are located in the midback region and encase the Thoracic nerves. Individuals with damage to these areas will typically have normal function of the shoulder, arms, wrists and hands, but impaired muscle function of the truck and upper chest is likely.
- L1-L5 Vertebrae: This set of vertebrae encase the Lumbar Nerves and are located directly below the midback vertebrae area. Generally, impairment involves loss of function below the waste. Individuals may need wheelchair assistance or, depending on the circumstances, may be able to walk with braces.
- S1-S5 Vertebrae: The S1-S5 vertebrae consist of the last five vertebrae of the spine and encompass the Sacral nerves. Individuals will have limited mobility of the hips and legs but generally retain the ability to walk with assistance.
Questions About Your Right To Recover Compensation In A Spinal Cord Injury Lawsuit
For many individuals, a catastrophic spinal cord injury causes not only physical and emotional pain and suffering, but also financial worries and concerns. Medical bills, day-to-day care and physical therapy are very costly. Fortunately, if an at-fault party caused your injury, you may be able to recover compensation.
An Experienced Personal Injury Team To Help You Pursue Damages
It’s important to understand that not every victim can file a lawsuit and recover damages; an injured party must prove certain elements before they can prevail.
At Cole Law Firm, our firm has experience handling claims for victims of spinal cord injuries in Houston, Texas, and surrounding areas. Our founding attorney, Toby Cole, is Board Certified in personal injury law and has litigated many cases. Toby is also a quadriplegic and understands the unique aspects of living with a serious injury.
He offers clients both legal advice and personal guidance on how to move forward after a life-changing injury.