Spinal Cord Injury
Traumatic injuries to the spine can include fractures or dislocations of
the spine (vertebrae) or damage to the actual spine cord. Injuries to
the spine or spinal cord are often as a result of injury to the head or
neck. Accidents such as motor vehicle accidents, falls, diving into shallow
water or assaults account for a large number of injuries to the spine
and spinal cord. It is possible to injury to spine without injuring the
A person with injury to the spine alone (without spinal cord involvement)
often complain of pain and muscle spasms in the affected area. Often,
if a person has fractured their spine, they will complain of tenderness
over the affected area. Occasional, as in fractures of the lower spine,
an accident victim may have radiation of the pain to other areas to the
body, such as the legs. Fractures of the spine will include immobilizing
the spine, dependent upon the location of the fracture. This can range
from a simple neck collar to a halo for neck fractures and body casts
for lower spine fractures. This assists with preventing further injury
to the spine or spinal cord. It is always important to monitor these people
carefully, as swelling from the fractured spine could lead to compression
on the spinal cord. Accident victims can also expect to be on bed rest,
take pain and muscle relaxing medications and further into the healing
process, attend physical therapy sessions.
Persons with injury to the spinal cord (either with or without injury to
the spine) can either sustain a complete spinal cord injury (where the
spinal cord has been completely severed) or an incomplete injury (where
part to the spinal cord, at the site of injury, is still intact). A person
with spinal cord injuries will exhibit symptoms depending upon the location
of their injury. Injury to the lower spinal cord area may result in weakness,
numbness of the legs, paralysis of the legs, loss of bowel and bladder
control and loss of sexual functioning. Injury to the upper spinal cord
area may result in the A person exhibiting all of the above symptoms and
weakness, numbness or paralysis of the arms, difficulty or inability to
breath on their own. Spinal cord injury and damage can also to the death.
Again, the symptoms depend upon the location of the spinal cord injury.
Treatment of spinal cord injury and damage is a medical emergency. The
main focus of treatment is to stabilize the damaged area to prevent further
injury and to minimize the swelling of the damaged spinal cord. Because
swelling can result in further compression of the spinal cord, preventing
it can reduce the extent of the damage. Treatment is dependent upon the
severity of the injury. If there is bleeding and swelling in the spinal
cord or broken vertebrae pressing on the spinal cord, surgery may be required
to relieve the compression and swelling of the spinal cord. Many times,
high doses of steroids are given to assist with the swelling and prevent
further swelling. A person may also require traction, again ranging from
a neck collar, body casting, or surgical traction systems such as the
halo. Again these A persons will require pain medications, bed rest and
a significant amount of emotional support.
Nerve damage, such as a spinal cord injury, often leads to permanent, devastating
injuries. Because nerve endings do not have the ability to regenerate,
damage to them leads to irreversible injuries and symptoms. Accident victims
with spinal cord injuries often have suffered a life-changing event that
requires them to adjust to life with limitations such as paralysis.
Always get prompt medical attention for yourself or anyone suffering a
spine or spinal cord injury. If you, a friend, or loved one have wrongfully
suffered from a spine or spinal cord injury, you ask why, and take immediate
steps to protect your or their legal interest. Consider the suggestions
in our accident guide, and call us immediately. We are here to help. At
Larry King, P.C., we recognize the unique issues pertaining accident victims.
You can call us at (757) I-N-J-U-R-E-D or contract us with this sites
Contact Form, seven days a week, 24 hours a day, every day of the year. We are committed
to doing the extra things it takes to help our clients.
Proudly Representing Clients Throughout Hampton Roads
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