When the spinal cord suffers damage, the body’s ability to move, feel, and function can be irreversibly altered. Unfortunately, spinal cord injuries are an all-too-common result of car accidents in Florence.
In fact, motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries, accounting for nearly half of all spinal cord injuries suffered each year, according to Mayo Clinic.
If you sustained spine damage in a Florence car accident that was not your fault, you might be entitled to compensation for the harm you have suffered, including the costs of your medical care and lost income. The attorneys at Jebaily Law Firm are ready to help you demand this compensation.
We understand just how devastating spinal cord injuries can be. For over 50 years, we’ve been helping ordinary people throughout Florence and South Carolina get money and accountability for serious injuries that weren’t their fault. We work tirelessly to pursue the best outcome for our clients, even if that means fighting the insurance companies and taking them to court.
Types of Car Accident-Related Spinal Injuries
Common spinal injuries from car accidents include the following:
- Spinal Fractures – The sudden trauma of a car accident can cause breaks or fractures in the vertebrae, which are the bones that support the spinal cord. Severe fractures could damage the spinal cord, causing paralysis.
- Herniated Discs – The vertebrae are separated by intervertebral discs, which are made of a jelly-like inner nucleus protected by a harder outer layer. A herniated disc occurs when the inner core pushes out through a tear or rupture in the outer layer. Herniated discs may press on adjacent nerves, causing severe pain and limiting mobility.
- Spinal Cord Damage – Spinal cord damage can occur when a sudden, traumatic blow fractures, dislocates, or crushes a vertebra, causing damage to the bundle of nerves that runs through the backbone and branches off to connect the rest of the body to the brain.
Common Symptoms of Spinal Injuries
A patient’s specific symptoms will depend on the location and severity of the spinal cord injury. For example, a spinal cord injury in the neck or upper back may affect the upper extremities, such as the arms and hands. In contrast, an injury in the lower back may affect the lower extremities, such as the legs and feet.
Furthermore, symptoms will depend on whether the injury is complete or incomplete:
- Complete Spinal Cord Injury – Patients with a complete spinal cord injury will lose all sensation and motor function below the level of the injury.
- Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury – Patients with an incomplete spinal cord injury will retain some sensation and motor function below the level of injury.
The following symptoms are commonly seen in patients with spinal cord injuries:
- Extreme pain
- Tingling in arms, hands, legs, or feet
- Difficulty breathing
- Difficulty with movement and coordination
- Loss of movement
- Loss of feeling or altered sensation in parts of the body, such as hands, arms, legs, or feet
- Loss of control over bodily systems, such as bowel or bladder control
- Muscle spasms
- Changes in sexual function
Treatment Options for Spinal Injuries from Car Crashes
Unfortunately, there is no way to reverse the damage done by a spinal injury. However, scientists worldwide are experimenting with novel treatments with the hope that spinal cord damage could be reversed and repaired one day.
In the meantime, treatment is focused on preventing the damage from worsening, improving the patient’s quality of life, and reducing car accident spine pain.
Typically, treatment follows three stages:
- Emergency Stage – Immediately after the injury, treatment focuses on stabilizing the patient and preventing further damage. Treatment may include medication, surgery, and immobilization using braces or other equipment.
- Rehabilitative Stage – Once the patient is stabilized, doctors will turn to rehabilitation, which may require many years of physical and occupational therapy. Therapists will work with patients on strengthening muscles, regaining motor function and control, and adjusting to new ways of doing things. Doctors will also manage secondary complications, such as pressure injuries, circulatory problems, and muscle wasting.
- Long-Term Management Stage – Over the long term, most spinal cord injury patients will need continued care, such as physical therapy, medication, and management of secondary complications. Some spinal cord injury patients may need around-the-clock, home healthcare assistance.
Potential Compensation for Spinal Injuries
If you suffered a spinal injury in a car accident caused by another driver, you might be entitled to compensation from the at-fault party. Potential compensation for spinal injuries includes:
- Costs of all necessary medical care
- Costs of life care assistance
- Lost wages
- Diminished earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
Next Steps After a Spinal Injury from a Car Accident in Florence
If you suffered a spinal injury from a car accident in Florence, South Carolina, you should take the following steps to protect your right to seek compensation from the at-fault party:
- Seek medical attention immediately. Spinal injuries are serious and can worsen significantly if not promptly and adequately treated. See a doctor immediately to have your injuries diagnosed and added to your medical record, which may be helpful evidence in your case.
- Hire a lawyer. While you focus on your recovery, our lawyers can focus on building your case for recovering compensation.
- Follow your doctor’s orders. Follow your doctor’s treatment plan and keep all follow-up appointments.
- Keep track of expenses. Save copies of bills, invoices, and receipts related to your injury or other losses, as this will establish a baseline for how much you deserve in compensation. Also consider keeping a journal about how your injuries affect your daily life.
How Our Attorneys Can Help You
An experienced spinal cord injury attorney at the Jebaily Law Firm can help you by:
- Conducting an independent investigation of the accident
- Gathering evidence to prove the other driver caused the crash and is liable for your injuries
- Determining all potential sources of compensation
- Communicating with the insurance companies and other parties on your behalf
- Negotiating for a fair settlement
- Representing you in court if necessary to seek the maximum compensation you deserve
Contact the Florence Car Accident Lawyers at Jebaily Law Firm
If you sustained a spinal cord injury in a car accident that wasn’t your fault, contact Jebaily Law Firm for a free case review. Our experienced Florence, SC, car accident attorneys can help you seek the compensation you need for the harm you have suffered.