Spinal Cord Injury Attorneys Serving the Scranton Area
Your spinal cord is the main avenue of communication from your brain to the rest of your body. Through your spinal cord, your brain can control the parts of your body that automatically keep you alive, receive information on pain and temperature, and enable your full movement. Even minor damage to the spinal cord can be catastrophic. An injured spinal cord can partially or completely cut off communication from the brain to any parts below the injury site. A victim can suffer permanent, life-changing damages.
Someone with a spinal cord injury can suffer from chronic pain, high medical costs, and reduced quality of life. If you sustained a spinal injury due to someone else’s negligent actions, you deserve compensation. A Scranton spinal cord injury lawyer at Munley Law can fight for your right to recover damages to cover medical and rehabilitation costs, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. Contact our Scranton personal injury lawyers today via chat, email, or phone to schedule a free consultation.
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What Are the Leading Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries?
An estimated 17,500 spinal cord injuries, or SCIs, occur each year in the United States. Nearly 40 percent of these injuries are caused by motor vehicle crashes, particularly car and motorcycle accidents. The vast majority of events leading to spinal cord injuries are entirely preventable, occurring due to someone’s negligence or reckless actions.
The most common causes of spinal cord injuries include:
- Motor vehicle accidents – Even a minor accident can lead to a traumatic cervical spinal cord injury, which may be mistaken as a simple whiplash injury.
- Catastrophic falls – People over the age of 65 are especially at risk for a slip-and-fall-related injury, which usually results from a sudden compression or twisting of the spinal cord
- Workplace and industrial accidents – A dangerous work environment can lead to a spinal cord injury when workers suffer an accident from heavy machinery or other hazards. Additionally, workers can suffer spine injuries when lifting heavy objects improperly or outside established safety standards.
- Medical malpractice – When a medical professional neglects their duty of care, it can lead to spinal cord injuries. Some common medical errors include surgery mistakes, incorrectly administered anesthesia, chiropractic treatment malpractice, and failure to diagnose a ruptured disc or spinal abscess.
Many events that lead to a spinal cord injury result from careless behavior. No one deserves to experience a spinal cord injury, and anyone suffering from an SCI deserves compensation from responsible parties.
What Types of Damages Can Occur to the Spinal Cord?
The spine is divided into three sections:
- Cervical – Includes the neck and most of the upper part of the spine
- Thoracic – Includes the middle of the back
- Lumbar – Includes the lower part of the back connecting to the tailbone
The 31 vertebrae shield the spine from damage, and between the vertebrae soft discs allow the spine to move and absorb shock without damaging the bone.
When a severe force acts on the spine, or the spine is twisted or strained beyond its normal limit, it can damage the vertebrae of the spine or push the disc of tissue between the spine into the spinal cord. In some cases, the spinal cord can be entirely severed.
Spinal cord injuries are generally either complete or incomplete:
- Complete – The person suffers either complete paraplegia or complete quadriplegia.
- Paraplegia – A loss of sensation and movement in the lower body, usually the legs, bowel, bladder, and sexual organs
- Quadriplegia – Includes the symptoms of paraplegia as well as a loss of movement or feeling in the hand or arm, with the possibility of requiring a ventilator to breathe
- Incomplete – Someone may suffer from a partial loss of movement or feeling in one or more appendages
The symptoms of a spinal cord injury can vary due to factors like the severity and location of the injury. Injuries to the spinal cord aren’t always immediately obvious, and many symptoms can occur days or weeks after an accident.
Spinal cord injury symptoms include:
- Reduction or loss in the ability to feel the temperature
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Reduction or loss of movement in one or more limbs
- Stinging, tingling, or numbness
- A feeling of pressure in the head or areas of the spine
- Jerky movements or spasms
- Altered sexual function
- Breathing challenges
Recovery from a spinal cord injury can lead to additional complications, especially for injuries requiring long-term care. Those who have suffered from a spine injury are at higher risk for new injuries.
Common complications from a spinal cord injury include:
- Infections, bed sores, and clots from lack of movement ability
- Involuntary muscle spasms
- Difficulty with weight control
- Sexual dysfunction or loss of sexual function entirely
- Injuries resulting from an inability to sense pain or temperature
How Expensive Are Spinal Cord Injuries?
Rehabilitation for an SCI is also known as Neuro-Recovery Rehab. Damages to the spinal cord can often result in a permanent disability, as the nerves of the spine cannot heal back together like bone. These permanent damages can require long-term care and rehabilitation, which can be incredibly costly.
In addition to general medical expenses, SCI victims may require:
- Feeding assistance
- Toileting and hygiene assistance
- Therapy for physical, occupational, or speech impairments
- Tools and assistive devices for long-term use
Some injured persons may require long-term care in a nursing home or assisted living facility. SCI sufferers and their families may need to hire a long-term personal care assistant or other forms of household assistance. Even those with minor spinal cord injuries may require such care later on in their lives as their aging is affected by their injuries.
Contact Us to Fight For Your Spinal Cord Injury Compensation
Spinal cord injuries can drastically change your life. You may suffer from a loss of wages from missing work or being unable to work entirely. Your life enjoyment can suffer from losing your ability to participate in your favorite activities. You may require costly and painful medical treatment.
If you have suffered from a spinal cord injury, reach out to an experienced Scranton catastrophic injury attorney at Munley Law right away. Our spinal cord injury attorneys have a long history of representing accident victims in Scranton, Wilkes-Barre, and throughout the Keystone State. We can look over your case in a no-obligation free consultation and help you decide the best path forward.
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Scranton Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer
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Scranton Practice Areas
227 Penn Ave,
Scranton, PA 18503