Back and spinal cord injuries are generally caused by a traumatic blow to the spinal cord. They can result from car accidents, defective products, slip and falls, sporting accidents, work-related accidents, violence and more. Injuries can require numerous surgeries, rehabilitation and a lifetime of costly care.
Back and spinal cord injuries certainly take a financial toll on injured victims and their family, but they can also take an emotional toll as well. In fact, most back and spinal cord injuries severely limit victims from living the lives they once did – and that affects everyone.
Understanding Spinal Cord Injuries
According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), it is estimated that approximately 273,000 people are living with some form of spinal cord injury in the United States and that 12,000 new spinal cord injuries occur every year. While the term “spinal cord injury” can be used to describe many types of injuries such as paraplegia (the paralysis of the lower half of the body which includes both legs) and quadriplegia (also referred to as tetraplegia which affects all of the limbs), these types of injuries generally fall into two categories: complete and incomplete.
- Complete Spinal Cord Injuries. Complete spinal cord injuries indicate a loss of functioning below the point of injury. Complete paraplegia is defined as a permanent loss of nerve and motor function below level T1, which results in loss of movement and sensation in bowel, bladder, sexual region and legs. Hands and arms and hands function normally. Complete quadriplegia / tetraplegia refers to the loss of arm and hand movement in addition to loss of nerve and motor function below C1 level, sometimes requiring use of a ventilator to breathe.
- Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries. Incomplete spinal cord injuries refer to injuries in which there is some movement and/or sensation still present below the injury point. The degree of functioning and use following an incomplete spinal cord injury is typically unknown for several weeks after the injury occurred. It may leave the patient with some feeling and no movement or in some movement but little feeling, but it varies by location and the severity of the injury.
Regardless of whether a back or spinal cord injury is complete or incomplete, the initial costs of medical treatment, rehabilitation and ongoing care can be overwhelming.
Damages For Back & Spinal Cord Injuries
Back and spinal cord injuries can be financially devastating. According to the NSCISC, the estimated initial and lifetime medical and personal care costs for quadriplegics, paraplegics and anyone who has suffered a spinal cord injury are:
|Injury||Initial / first year costs||Lifetime costs based on 25 years old when injured|
|Quadriplegics / Tetraplegics||$750,000 to $1 million||$3.4 million to $4.6 million|
|Others with incomplete motor functions||$340,000||$1.5 million|
If the back or spinal cord injured victim substantially provided income to your household and can no longer work, that financial strain becomes even harder. If the injury occurred as the result of someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation in the form of:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional pain and suffering
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Modifications to your living environment (ramps, lowering cabinetry, widening doorways, etc.)
- Purchasing equipment to live with your injury (motorized wheelchairs, special vans, chair lifts, etc.).
These are just a few of the damages that may be available to you. An experienced back and spinal cord injury attorney can analyze your family’s situation and determine all the types of compensation for which you may be entitled.
Call An Orange County Spinal Cord Accident Attorney
When you or a family member has been the victim of a back or spinal cord injury, it will likely affect your entire family for years – if not a lifetime. Make sure that you get every bit of compensation you deserve by contacting an experienced Orange County back and spinal cord injury attorney who understands how these types of cases work, how insurance companies operate and how to successfully advocate for your best interests.
With more than 30 years of combined experience and tens of millions of dollars recovered for injured clients, Avrek Law Firm attorneys know what it takes to achieve top results. To schedule a free case review, contact us online or call 1.866-598-5548.