Spinal Cord Injuries: What They Are, Claims, Consequences
What Is the Spinal Cord? What Does It Do?
Your spinal cord is part of your “central nervous system”. It is a bundle of nerves that runs from your brain down through the vertebra in your back. The purpose of the spinal cord is to relay information to and from your brain to the rest of your body.
Your spinal cord is protected by your spine; a series of bones that are stacked on top of one another like a pile of blocks.
You can fracture your spine (break one or more the vertebrae in your spine) but as long as you do not injure your spinal cord, you can recover without serious long term effects.
Spinal Cord Injuries
Your central nervous system is like your body’s personal internet. It is the path that your brain uses to send messages and information to and from other parts of your body.
If your spinal cord is injured in an accident it is like turning off the internet to that part of the body. The part of the cord below the injury can be cut off from your brain.
The nerves and body parts that are linked to the areas of the spinal cord below your injury are also cut off from your brain. This means they may not be able to function.
So an injury to the part of spinal cord that communicates with your legs could mean that your legs stop working. In other words, your legs may be paralysed.
Consequences of Spinal Cord Injuries
A serious spinal cord injury can be a traumatic, life changing event.
The effects of spinal cord injuries can be permanent and catastrophic.
Possible consequences of a spinal cord injury include:
- Having to change your job (or not being able to work at all);
- Having to modify your home or move to a new home that is suitable for wheelchair access;
- You may require specialized nursing care on a 24 hour basis; and
- Significant costs for things like rehabilitation, physiotherapy and other medical needs.
Causes of Spinal Cord Injury
Your spinal cord can be damaged in a variety of ways including:
- Medical mistakes during surgery;
- Work place accidents;
- Car, truck or motorcycle accidents;
- Sports related injuries; and
- Physical assaults.
Spinal Cord Injury Compensation
If you have suffered a spinal cord injury as a result of any of these causes you may be entitled to make a claim for compensation.
However, spinal injury claims are among the most complicated types of personal injury claims. It is important that you get the advice of a lawyer who is experienced in catastrophic injury claims.