Nearly 18,000 new spinal cord injury cases occur in the United States each year, according to 2019 data from the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCSC). Furthermore, the estimated number of people living with spinal cord injury in the U.S. is around 291,000, but it can be as high as 363,000 people.
Spinal cord injuries can occur in a variety of ways. Because the spinal cord is essential in communicating between the brain and the rest of the body, an injury can be devastating and even life-changing.
If you have suffered a spinal cord injury in California due to negligence or medical malpractice, the Scott Carr Law Firm can help. Call 415-799-2229 to schedule a consultation or contact the firm on our website.
Common Causes of a Spinal Cord Injury
The spinal cord is a tight bundle of cells and nerves that runs down the center of your back. It sends and receives signals between the brain and the rest of your body. A spinal cord injury can be caused by a direct injury to the spinal cord itself, or injury to the tissue and bones surrounding it.
Though spinal cord injuries can arise from diseases like cancer, the majority of cases are caused by trauma. According to the NSCSC, vehicle crashes have been the leading cause of spinal cord injury since 2015, making up nearly 40% of cases. Falls follow closely behind at nearly 32%, while acts of violence, sports injuries, and medical or surgical reasons are other common causes.
Treatment for a Spinal Cord Injury
Any spinal cord injury is a medical emergency. If you’ve sustained a spinal cord injury, you should seek medical treatment right away.
Symptoms of a spinal cord injury depend on the severity of the injury, plus its location on the spinal cord. They can include:
- Numbness or tingling
- Loss of or changes in sensation in the hands and feet
- Pain or pressure in the head, neck, or back
- Partial or complete loss of sensory function
- Partial or complete loss of motor control
- Loss of nerve function
- Paralysis affecting the limbs or part of the body
- Loss of bladder and bowel control
- Difficulty breathing
People who survive a spinal cord injury may experience chronic pain, bladder and bowel dysfunction, or increased susceptibility to respiratory or heart problems.
Compensation for a Spinal Cord Injury
People with spinal cord injuries are two to five times more likely to die prematurely than people without them. The more severe the injury, the higher the risk for mortality. For those who survive a spinal cord injury, the costs can be great, as high as over $70,000 per year.
If your spinal cord injury was caused by a motor vehicle accident, a slip and fall, or another incident involving another person’s negligence or harm, you may be able to receive financial compensation by filing a lawsuit.
You can seek compensation, also called damages, for:
- Current or future medical bills
- Visits to your medical provider or the hospital
- Visits to specialists or clinics
- Costs of medication or rehabilitation
- Costs for occupational and job training
- Lost wages while you recover
- Lost earning ability
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If your lawsuit is successful, the person responsible for causing your injury will pay for the aforementioned costs.
Speak to a Spinal Cord Injury Attorney Now
You’re not required to hire an attorney to file a personal injury lawsuit, premises liability lawsuit, or product liability lawsuit. However, an experienced attorney can help you file your lawsuit properly, handle communication with other parties, and fight for your rights — so you can focus on recovering. Even if your case settles before going to trial, lawsuits can be lengthy and stressful. A lawyer can help you handle it all.
If you or someone you love is suffering from the effects of a spinal cord injury caused by another person’s recklessness, negligence, or harm, speak with the Scott Carr Law Firm today. Call 415-799-2229 to schedule a consultation or contact our office on our website.