Spinal cord injuries often result in lasting disability in the form of:
- Partial or complete paralysis
- Reduced mobility
- Impaired muscle control or ability to speak
- Chronic pain
- Weakness, tingling, or numbness
However, this does not mean there will not be any improvement in function in some patients. Every injury is different, and it is possible for some spinal cord injury victims to experience improvements depending on the nature and severity of their injury.
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Factors That Affect a Patient’s Recovery Potential from a Spinal Cord Injury
The severity of the injury depends on where on the spine it occurs. Lower spinal cord injuries can result in paraplegia, while upper spinal cord injuries can cause quadriplegia. In the most severe cases, the victim can have trouble breathing, feeding themselves, and caring for themselves, which can significantly impair their quality of life.
Recovery also depends on whether the injury was complete or incomplete. Patients suffering from an incomplete spinal injury have a greater potential for recovery than those who have suffered a completed spinal injury. This is related to the number of axons and cells damaged at the time of the accident. Generally speaking, the fewer damaged axons and cells, the greater the capacity for recovery from a spinal cord injury.
Treatment for Spinal Cord Injuries
Surgical or non-surgical treatments may be appropriate, depending on the injury. Surgeons may be able to decompress nerves and repair fractures to achieve quality-of-life improvements.
Recovering from a spinal cord injury also includes an extensive rehabilitation period. This may include the support of physiotherapists, occupational therapists, nutritionists, social workers, and others. A patient may undertake this treatment at a hospital, a rehabilitation center, or both.
Although surgical cures for spinal injuries are not possible, there are many experimental treatments for patients with spinal injuries. These include epidural stimulation, retraining central nervous systems, exoskeleton suits, and functional electrical stimulation (FES).
A Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer May Be Able to Help You
If you or your loved one’s spinal cord injury was caused by the negligence of another party, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, losses, and other expenses. In some cases, punitive damages may also be appropriate. You do not have to face this situation alone. To find out how a lawyer can help you following a spinal injury, call the Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine today at 1-800-747-3733 for a free consultation.