Spinal cord injuries can be caused by a variety of accidents, including auto or truck crashes, as well as motorcycle, pedestrian and bicycle accidents. A serious fall accident can also result in a spinal cord injury.
Spinal cord injuries are a type of catastrophic injury and can be a life-altering injury. Broadly, any spinal injury may result in loss of sensation or movement in one or all limbs, loss of bladder and bowel control, loss of sexual function, pain, difficulty in breathing and other complications.
If you suffer a spinal cord injury, your ability to live your life as it was before the injury will be dramatically affected. Oftentimes, there needs to be modifications made to your home and car to make it possible for you to move about or be independently mobile. Most people who have suffered a spinal cord injury, however, require long term care or assistance with daily activities. This type of care can cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars and can be sometimes into the millions.
Apart from the physical toll of a spinal cord injury, a debilitating spinal injury and all its resulting effects on the person’s mind and body can lead to depression. Marriages and relationships can be placed under severe strain. Catastrophic injuries like spinal injuries make life challenging not just for the patient, but for family members and care givers too.
There are several types of paralysis that can result after a spinal injury. Paraplegia refers to the loss of use of the lower limbs. Quadriplegia, also sometimes referred to as tetraplegia, refers to the loss of the use of the lower limbs and upper limbs, including the arms, hands, shoulders legs, and pelvic organs
Recently, scientists have revealed successful results with the use of a mind-controlled exoskeleton to help a person paralyzed as a result of a spinal injury walk again. The subject in this particular clinical trial, a 31- year- old male, suffered a serious spinal injury when he fell at a night club four years ago. His injury led to quadriplegia, a condition in which a person loses control of both his upper and lower limbs. Electrodes that were implanted in the subject’s brain to read brain activity, transmit the information to a nearby computer. The computer software then processed the brain inputs, and converted them into commands. If the subject thinks “walk,” for instance, the computer transmits this instruction to the exoskeleton, which will then propel the subject’s leg forward through controlled motions. While this research is still in its early stages, this technology may be able to help make it easier for persons with spinal injury and suffering from paralysis to move around or use their limbs.
Until further breakthroughs are made for treatment of spinal cord injuries and its resulting paralysis, the road to recovery for a victim of a spinal cord injury is long and complex. While there is no cure for a spinal cord injury, treatment typically involves surgery, physical therapy, and rehabilitation. The long term outlook for a victim of a spinal cord injury is, unfortunately, difficult.
If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal injury, talk to an Atlanta personal injury attorney at the Katz Law Firm about filing a claim for damages for your losses. You may qualify for damages that include medical costs, future medical expenses, lost income, lowered earning capacity, pain and suffering, loss of consortium and other damages. Call an attorney at our firm to discuss your claim.