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Car Accidents & Spinal Cord Injuries

Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Lawyers

A spinal cord injury results from trauma rather than disease. Spinal cord injury symptoms vary widely depending on the degree of injury and exactly where on the spinal cord the injury occurred.

Spinal cord injuries are often referred to as either “incomplete,” which means the effect on the patient is limited, or “complete,” which means there is the total loss of some functions. Emergency treatment after a spinal injury is critical. Medical responders must restrain the spine and control inflammation to help prevent further spinal cord damage.

Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries

While spinal cord injuries occur due to many different causes, car accidents are a leading cause of spinal cord injuries, accounting for almost 40% of these injuries. The force of a vehicle collision can result in a non-standard twisting or fracture of the spinal cord.

Rollover accidents are the main type of accident that results in spinal cord injuries. When seat belts are not worn, or when they don’t function properly, the risk of spinal cord injury is much higher.

Consider these statistics:

  • Roughly a quarter-million Americans are currently living with spinal cord injuries
  • More than 10,000 new spinal injuries occur every year

Lasting Effects of Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injury patients with “complete” injuries usually do not recover much if any lost function. Patients whose injuries are classified as incomplete have much better chances for recovery. It is not unheard of for patients initially assessed as having suffered a complete injury to later be reclassified as having an incomplete injury. Most recovery happens during the first six months after a spinal cord injury. After nine months post-injury, hardly any patients experience substantial recovery.

Degrees of Injury

This type of injury may cause anything from temporary pain to permanent paralysis. After a complete spinal cord injury, all function is lost below the area of the spine that is damaged. Injuries that happen at neck level are usually the most severe, and can result in quadriplegia and even the necessity for ventilators to assist the patient in breathing.

What You Should Do Now: Call Kelley/Uustal

Immediate emergency medical assistance is vital after a possible spinal cord injury. Once medical care has been obtained, the victim or his or her loved ones should contact an experienced personal injury attorney. Insurance companies do not stay in business by compensating accident victims. Competent attorneys like those at Kelley/Uustal know exactly what to do to help protect the rights of those who have suffered spinal cord injuries and obtain justice and fair compensation for them. Contact us today for more information.

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