Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers

Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal cord injuries are serious. They almost always result in some form of disability. But with the right support, you can usually secure a good level of compensation. Money that will make it easier for you, or your child, to live a full life. It means that you will have the cash available to pay for ongoing physiotherapy, other treatments, and specialist equipment.

Over the years, we have helped all kinds of people to secure the compensation they need. Doing this has enabled us to build up a wealth of knowledge about this type of injury. Information that we share with you below. This is an overview of all of the different types of spinal cord injuries, how they are caused and what you can do to ensure you get the help you need to be able to successfully claim compensation.

Spinal Cord Injuries

There are two general types of spinal cord injury – complete and incomplete.

Complete spinal cord injuries are those that cause permanent damage to the affected area of the spinal cord. They include:

  • Paraplegia – loss of movement and sensation in the lower half of the body
  • Tetraplegia – paralysis of all limbs
  • Triplegia – paralysis of three limbs, e.g. two legs and one arm

Incomplete spinal cord injuries are characterized by partial damage to the spinal cord, they include:

  • Anterior cord syndrome – this is usually caused when the anterior artery is damaged, this mainly affects the sensory pathways and occasionally certain motor functions.
  • Brown-Sequard syndrome – trauma or punctures can lead to this debilitating condition that leaves one side of the body desensitized, weak and, occasionally, paralyzed.
  • Central cord syndrome – is what happens when the central point of the spinal cord is injured. This is the most common injury. Usually, you lose sensation in your arms and hands and may suffer from limited motion.

Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries

Unfortunately, there are many ways to end up with a spinal cord injury. We have helped clients who have sustained these kinds of serious injuries in all of the following circumstances:

  • Car crashes – these accidents can happen at high speed causing a sudden blow to the spine, that damages the spinal cord. The surrounding tissues, discs, ligaments, and vertebrae could also be damaged when that happens. It is even possible for sections of the spine to be dislocated or crushed. Bleeding in the area can also cause a lot of damage.
  • Slips and falls – simply slipping over or falling from a stool can lead to a traumatic spinal injury. You don’t have to fall from a great height to land heavily enough on your back to be badly hurt. It is all too easy to twist awkwardly on the way down, leading to you slipping a disc or experiencing a far worse injury. It is surprising how often someone´s negligent behaviour leads to people tripping, slipping, or falling and damaging their spine.
  • Sports injuries – sadly, quite a few of our clients hurt their spines while participating in their favourite sport, especially those that take part in full-contact sports. Examples include American football, rugby, wrestling, and ice hockey. Taking part in high speed or highly physical sports like skydiving, skiing, diving, and snowboarding can also lead to serious spinal injuries.
  • Diseases – sadly, there are quite a few diseases that can damage the spinal cord. Most of the time whether you contract these diseases or not is a question of chance. But, occasionally, negligence on the part of a medical professional, drug company or another party can lead to your being unnecessarily exposed to one of these diseases.

Below, is a list of the most common diseases and medical conditions that can result in spinal cord damage:

  • Cysts or tumours on the spine
  • Intramedullary tumours that develop within the supporting cells inside the spinal cord
  • Extramedullary tumours which grow in the membrane that surrounds the spinal cord
  • Viral or bacterial infections, e.g. polio or meningitis
  • Vertebral infections that develop as a result of spinal trauma
  • Spinal canal infections
  • Multiple sclerosis, which can cause lesions along the spinal cord
  • Congenital disorders such as spina bifida
  • Abnormal spinal alignment

Treatments for Spinal Cord Injuries

Sadly, there is still NO way of reversing damage to the spinal cord. But there is research going on into using prostheses and medications that promote nerve cell regeneration. Some of which are showing promise.

In the meantime, there are several physical therapies available that can improve mobility levels for many sufferers. Currently, physical therapy for spinal cord injuries focus on:

  • Preventing further injury
  • Empowering patients to lead active and productive lives despite their spinal cord injuries
  • Training patients to use assistive devices such as wheelchairs, leg braces and walkers to help them to get around better

Spinal cord injuries could be life-altering events. If you or your loved one has a spinal cord injury, consult with Diamond & Diamond in getting compensation.

Let Diamond & Diamond Help in Dealing With a Spinal Cord Injury

If you have suffered a spinal cord injury, please feel free to talk to us. We will sit down with you and discuss the facts of your case. Including, how your injury occurred, the impact it has had on your life and your long-term prognosis. This will enable us to work out what your legal options are.

“Don’t face a spinal cord injury alone. It’s okay to ask help from family and friends and from experts, and still be able to live a full life.”

FAQ’s on Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries

Can spinal cord injuries happen to kids?

Sadly, spinal cord injuries can happen to kids as well as adults. They can just as easily be involved in a car crash or have another type of accident. But they are less likely to hurt their spine while participating in a sport. If your child should suffer a spinal cord injury that has been caused by someone’s negligence please get in touch and let us help.

What kind of compensation is available for those with a spinal cord injury in Canada?

The amount of compensation that is available for those with a spinal cord injury in Canada varies. In some situations, there are payout limits. For example, in Ontario, if the injury is due to a car accident the limit is currently set at $2 million. But those limits can change at any time. If you have suffered a spinal cord injury, the best approach is to speak to a personal accident lawyer. They will be able to provide an estimate of how much compensation you may be entitled to.

What are the challenges of getting compensation for a spinal cord injury?

Getting compensation for a spinal cord injury can be a daunting process. You need to gather evidence, know how to interpret it, and build it into a case. Often, the only way to do that effectively is to call upon the expertise of someone with the right medical expertise. You also have to understand what your rights are and how the other party failed you in the eyes of the law. It is a complex process, so it is usually wise to hire a personal injury lawyer that has experience.

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