Toll Taken By Spinal Cord Injuries and the Need for Compensation - Diamond and Diamond Lawyers
  • Friday, 06 October 2017

Toll Taken By Spinal Cord Injuries and the Need for Compensation

#AskJoshuaHimel

Spinal cord injuries are among the most serious and life-altering events anyone can experience. The toll they take on the victims and their families goes beyond the $2.67 billion estimated financial cost of these types of injuries in Canada. When an injury is caused by the negligent or intentional conduct of another person or entity, a lawsuit for compensation may be pursued on behalf of the victim.

The complex spinal cord

The spinal cord extends from the base of the brain approximately 45 cm to 64 cm along the middle of your back to your buttocks. It is encased in the spinal column and contains a nerve bundle carrying nerve fibers transmitting signals between the brain and other parts of your body. Those nerves control your ability to perform essential body functions, including:

  • Respiration
  • Movement
  • Sight
  • Speech
  • Walking
  • Touch and feel

An injury to the spinal column can cause damage to the spinal cord. If the nerves in the damaged area are unable to carry signals as they did before, you could lose essential body functions, and the result could include paralysis. The location of the damage to the spinal cord is one factor in determining the extentof the long-term effects of the injury.

One way to understand the importance of the spinal cord is to think about what happens when you touch a hot frying pan while cooking. The signals from the nerve fibers in your fingers are transmitted along the spinal cord to your brain. The brain then processes the information causing you to let out a verbal “ouch” as your hand is yanked away from the hot surface. Damage to your spinal column could slow or prevent the signals from getting to and from your brain with the result being potentially catastrophic injuries caused by your hand lingering on the hot surface.

Causes of spinal cord injuries

It is estimated that 600 people will suffer a spinal cord injury this year in Ontario. There are more than 86,000 people in Canada living with spinal cord injuries There is any number of activities or events that could cause a spinal cord injury, including:

  • Car and truck crashes
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Diving accidents
  • Sports injuries
  • Falls
  • Intentional physical assault

The most common causes of spinal injuries are motor vehicle accidents and unintentional falls.

Compensation for spinal cord injuries

Some injuries to the spinal cord can leave you with pain and minor discomfort, but more severe injuries can cause extensive damage resulting in complete paralysis. Severing of the spinal cord can cause death.

Common signs of an injury to the spinal cord include the following:

  • Impaired breathing
  • Inability or difficulty walking
  • Numbness and a tingling sensation in the extremities, including hands and feet
  • Paralysis in any part of the body

The compensation to which you might be entitled depends on the extent of the injuries and whether or not they are permanent. Permanent disability caused by a spinal cord injury could make it impossible for you to work and earn a living. Damages recoverable may include the following:

  • Lost earnings
  • Lost future earnings
  • Current and future costs of medical care
  • Cost of specialized equipment, such as wheelchairs
  • Rehabilitation expenses
  • Costs associated with home health aides and related services

Getting advice from experienced spinal cord compensation lawyers

If you or a family member has suffered a spinal cord injury in a car accident, slip-and-fall or other incident caused by the negligent or intentionally harmful conduct of another person or entity, speak to the personal injury lawyers at Diamond & Diamond. They are skilled and compassionate professionals dedicated to helping you recover the compensation you deserve. Don’t delay, contact our 24/7 injury hotline at 1-800-567-HURT or visit our website to speak to someone now about your claim. Consultations are free, and we have offices located throughout Ontario.

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