Suppose you should dread one thing in life, spinal cord injuries. This is because the cord serves as a medium to transport messages between your brain and the body.
Damage to it would mean your brain could no longer govern the body below the affected area, resulting in loss of movement, operation, sensation, or all three, depending on the severity of the injury.
Typically, spinal injuries involve a long rehabilitation period with extensive care. This means the costs associated with the treatment are significantly high. As a result, the other party may resist paying the damages.
Don't hesitate to contact us if you have sustained SCI due to someone else's fault and feel you may be eligible for compensation. We are spinal cord injury lawyers with vast experience in getting justice and coverage for people who have suffered SCIs because someone was too ignorant to care for their lives.
We evaluate your grounds for making a claim, then move forward with a personalized service tailored specifically to your needs.
What Are the Levels and Types of Spinal Cord Injuries?
There are two levels of SCIs: complete and incomplete. You can read everything about them below:
Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries
With these injuries, the victim does not entirely lose functionality, sensation, or operation below the injured site. The incomplete SCIs have a vast range of effects. Some are so mild that you will barely notice any weakness or loss of functionality in the body.
In other cases, the symptoms can be close in severity to that of a complete SCI.
Types of Incomplete SCIs
Here are some of the most common incomplete SCI types include:
Anterior Cord Syndrome
As the name suggests, ACS primarily affects the anterior 2/3 of the cord. This typically results in motor paralysis below the injured area and loss of ability to feel pain or temperature. However, vibratory and proprioceptive sensations remain unaffected.
Central Cord Syndrome
This injury damages the cord's center, destroying the pathway that carries signals from the brain to the spinal cord. This may cause you to lose motor skills, suffer from paralysis in the arms, or experience partial impairment in the legs.
This type of injury results in the partial loss of sensory or motion function. It may also result in both depending on the severity of the injury below the damaged spot. BSS typically occurs because of penetrating trauma or inflammation of spinal cord.
Complete Spinal Cord Injuries
These injuries are formidable because they can lead to total paralysis below the injured part. Complete SCIs equally affect both sides of the body and count for 50% of all spinal cord injury cases.
Back in the time, these injuries were considered incurable. However, the advancements in medical science have allowed doctors to better treat complete SCIs and maximize the quality of victims’ lives.
Types of Complete SCIs
There are many types of complete SCIs, with the following being the most common ones:
The most severe type of complete SCIs. The victim may suffer from paralysis of all limbs below the injury site, eliminating their ability to move. The higher the injury on the cord, the more severe the symptoms will be.
The damage to thoracic cord leads to paraplegia. In this SCI, the victim will lose the ability to move and feel below the damaged area. The severity of Paraplegia symptoms also depends on the height of injury on cord.
How Does SCI Affect Your Body?
As mentioned earlier, the spinal cord serves as a pathway for nerve signals to travel between brain and the body. An injury to it blocks the transmission of these signals resulting in partial or complete paralysis, numbness, or loss of motor skills or sensations.
The effect of SCI on the body depends on severity and level of the injury because specific areas of the body are connected with specific levels of cord. Typically, injuries that happen higher on the cord are more serious than the ones at the lower end.
The effects of SCI appear shortly after the injury. Therefore, it’s crucial to seek medical attention immediately if you or your loved one sustain an injury to the cord.
Common Spinal Cord Injury Symptoms
- Loss of movement
- Loss of sensation
- Loss of bowel or bladder control
- Difficulty breathing
- Exaggerated reflex activities
- Twisted neck or back
- Incoordination or paralysis
- Numbness or loss of sensation
- Poor sexual function
How Is Spinal Cord Injury Diagnosed and Treated?
The diagnosis involves a thorough examination of the cord. If the patient is conscious, the doctor will ask about what happened and check their ability to move different body parts.
The doctor will also ask the patient if they feel sensations around/below the injury site or have pain in the back or neck.
If the injury isn't confirmed, the doctor will perform imaging tests like X-ray, CT Scan, or MRI to conclude.
This test assesses the spinal cord's curvature, alignment, and overall balance. It may also spot spinal dislocation and abnormal/excessive movement at the affected site.
CT scan is an advanced procedure than X-rays. It combines x-ray and computer technology to produce detailed images of abnormalities in the spinal cord.
The most effective method to diagnose spinal cord injury. It combines solid electromagnetic waves with radio waves to identify any problems with the cord in full detail.
Once you are diagnosed with an SCI, the doctor will suggest a treatment based on your:
- Age and overall health
- The severity of the injury (incomplete/complete)
- Medical history
- Tolerance to specific medications and procedures
Surgery is sometimes essential to relieving pressure on the injured cord. However, there's no way to reverse damage to the spinal cord despite all the advancements in medicine. Even if partial recovery is possible, your body may take up to twelve months to achieve it.
Remember that recovery from SCI is a long-term process that takes place under the supervision of neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, nurses, therapists, and other medical staff working together.
The length of your hospitalization will depend on your symptoms. Once you are well enough for therapy, your medical team will transfer you to a rehabilitation center.
Why Hire a Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer?
Spinal cord injuries are the worst type of injuries. The pain alone can be excruciating at times.
Combine it with massive medical bills while you cannot work, and it will seem like your life is turning upside down.
Most SCIs happen because of falls, road accidents, medical malpractice, or assault.
In case you sustained the injury because of someone else's recklessness, you deserve compensation. But sadly, it won't come without a fight.
This is because the expenses are enormous, and the responsible party will try everything possible to deny your claim.
This is where spinal cord injury lawyers come in. These people are experts in reviewing spinal cord injury cases and finding witnesses and evidence to improve your chances of success.
Your attorney's job is to prove in court that your injury was not pre-existing.
The other party's neglect caused it, and they should be held accountable.
Hiring an SCI attorney will help you get the rightful compensation for your treatment, medical expenses, and ongoing suffering caused by disability.
The settlement will also cover your family's financial burden throughout your rehabilitation. This includes post-discharge therapies, home modifications, standing frames, adapted vehicles for the disabled, and more.
Remember that insurance companies will want you to settle for a small payment. Fortunately, spinal cord injury lawyers are master negotiators who can get you the best coverage possible.
At Ryan T. Hughes Law, we are qualified spinal cord injury attorneys striving to level the playing field for your claim. Contact us immediately to get started.
How Do We Help Victims Secure Maximum Compensation?
Any fracture can lower your quality of life, but nothing compares to the misery of a spinal cord injury. This is because the impact of SCIs extends far beyond immediate medical expenses. For instance, some ongoing treatments and therapies cost an arm and a leg.
Ryan T. Hughes Law aims to get you ideal compensation for medical bills, emotional and physical trauma, lost wages, and long-term rehabilitation. Our team consists of spinal cord injury lawyers with a proven track record of several years.
Over the years, we have dealt with the most challenging opponents and won compensations worth millions of dollars. Having us by your side means there's little to no chance of failure because we thoroughly study each case before dedicating resources to it.
Moreover, our next-level expertise, combined with our unwavering commitment to getting the best coverage for victims, means you can confidently hire us. Let's start today with a free, no-obligation consultation.
Some Causes of Acute Spinal Cord Injury
A spinal cord injury could turn your entire life upside down. It paralyzes your body and wreaks havoc on your mental health, making your lifestyle inactive.
But why does it happen? What are some of the causes that lead to this severe damage?
The injury occurs when a fall or accident compresses the area of the spine—the pressure bruises the affected area, resulting in damage to the spinal cord.
Here we've highlighted some common causes of spinal cord injuries to give you an in-depth understanding of this problem.
People fall for many reasons, with stumbling, tripping, and slipping as the most significant.
When you fall from the steps or stairs, you experience a traumatic blow to your spine that compresses your vertebrae. This compression damages the spinal disks, resulting in moderate pain that could increase if not taken care of initially.
It is estimated that in the US, fall-induced SCI is highest among the elderly, with over 70% of cases occurring in elders due to falls.
If you've sustained a spinal cord injury due to falling in a nursing home or during the job, you can contact our spinal cord injury lawyers today to discuss your legal options.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
Whether you're driving or walking alongside a road, nothing could be more painful than being the target of a collision. A simple accident can damage the surrounding tissues of the spinal cord and make your entire motor system dysfunctional.
As per National Cord Injury Statistical Center, car accidents are the leading cause of SCI, with over 39% of total cases registered due to such accidents. If you are also in such a sensitive situation, now is the right time to consult a spinal cord injury lawyer to recover compensation for your losses.
Whether it's a weaponless fight, sexual assault, domestic scuffle, or a planned attack through gun and knife, nothing good ever comes out of violence.
National Cord Injury Statistical Center states that over 14% of SCI cases result from violent encounters in the US alone. The injury in these incidents occurs when the victim is strangulated, stricken, or attacked by a heavy object.
Our highly experienced, knowledgeable spinal cord injury lawyers help you pursue criminal charges against the offenders to recover damages and give the responsible the punishment they deserve.
Surgical Complications and Medical Malpractice
A negligence or error by a healthcare provider can have unimaginable consequences on your life. There are several instances in the USA where doctors' inability to provide quality care has resulted in spinal cord injury for patients.
Medical malpractices that primarily contribute to SCI include:
- Incorrect administration of anesthesia
- Operation carried out by non-trained surgeons
- Lack of patient care in busy emergency rooms
- Not following set standards during chiropractic care
The only way forward in such incidents is to hire a trustworthy spinal cord injury lawyer who can file a lawsuit against the surgeon based on your unique medical case.
How Can You Find the Person Responsible for Your Loss?
Determining who exactly caused the injury is more manageable said than done. In most cases, people don't know against whom the lawsuit should be filed, so they compromise their case.
For example, if a company's employee attacks you, that company is equally responsible, and the case should also be filed against them. The same is the case with the clinic whose staff might have caused the spinal cord injury due to malpractice.
There are also some cases where you must file a lawsuit against a government entity. In these cases, the time window you have to take action is short, after which you won't be able to do anything.
At Ryan T. Hughes Law, our skilled spinal cord injury attorneys understand the complexities of these situations and can help you make informed decisions. We consider all the tiny details to prove that negligence was involved, ensuring you get the maximum recovery of all your losses.
Losses You Can Recover In a Lawsuit
While it's true that the suffering and emotional stress you experience can never be healed, you can still recover some economic damages to reduce the effect of trauma on you and your family.
For example, you can file a lawsuit to recover the losses for medical bills, lost wages, and anything that costs you during your rehabilitation. You can also claim for your reduced earning capacity, which might have lowered your income.
Some of the expected economic damages could be:
- Bills related to medicine, surgery, and hospital visits
- Lost jobs, wages, and promotions
- Expenses needed to look after your family
- Cost of vehicle repair in case of an accident
Remember, SCI is a life-altering injury; you must turn every stone to restore financial stability. We at Hughes Law take pride in having logic-driven lawyers who can negotiate fair compensation on your behalf and help you get what you deserve.
How to Strengthen Your SCI Claim in the Court?
While it's true that a person suffering from SCI can file a lawsuit to recover the damages, the success of the claim is not fully guaranteed. But you can build your case more substantially if you have documented proof of negligence.
The evidence can be in the form of the following:
- Witness testimony
- CCTV footage of the incident
- Pictures of the damaged vehicle along with plate number
- Driver's photos, along with his license number
- And anything that can prove your argument
You can share these proofs with your spinal cord injury lawyer, who will develop comprehensive strategies to win a favorable verdict.
Why You Should Choose Ryan T. Hughes Law for Your SCI Case?
At Ryan T. Hughes Law, we're led by specialized injury lawyers who believe that attention to detail, strong know-how of law, and compassion are the keys to winning your case. Here are some traits that set our lawyers apart from the rest:
We call upon our rock-solid history of successful cases where we've won in several complicated situations. This experience allows us to understand your unique dynamics and prepare the case per your needs and budget.
For our spinal cord injury lawyers, going into the core of the matter isn't a job –it's a commitment. We tap into our problem-solving approach to track down all the tiniest details of the incident, grabbing every opportunity that strengthens your claim.
For us, serving you is as much about recovering significant damages as feeling your suffering. We step into your shoes and translate your pain into concrete arguments to make a substantial impact on the judges.
We respond fast and are always there whenever you need us. Our vast resources allow us to confidently handle the complexities of your case and turn our working relationship into a lasting partnership.
Our entire work revolves around your satisfaction. It means we go the extra mile to prepare solid arguments and only relax once we secure maximum compensation. With us, your goals come first.
Ready to Hire Our Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer?
Becoming the target of an SCI is painful; would you fight for your rights, or would you be just another man wanting to recover your damages without any effort?
At Ryan T. Hughes Law, we're committed to making your life stress-free with our proactive legal support. We carefully understand the ins and outs of your unique situation and prepare a solid case that guarantees favorable outcomes.
Whether you've stuck in a situation where insurance companies are minimizing the compensation, or you want to file a lawsuit after complying with complicated regulations, reach out to us today. We'll never stop until you win.