Understanding Spinal Cord InjuriesTrusted Content
Legally reviewed by:Erik Abrahamson, J.D. October 25, 2019
Spinal cord injuries can result from a number of different causes. They are frequently the result of auto accidents but can also be the result of a serious fall. If you’ve experienced a spinal cord injury, then it is likely that your life has been completely altered. Chances are you are feeling the effects of your injury both emotionally and physically. Spinal cord injuries can be devastating, but advances in scientific research may mean better treatment for these injuries in the future.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
A spinal cord injury is damage to any part of the spinal cord or the nerves at the end of the spinal canal. Spinal cord injuries often result in changes to a person’s strength, sensation, and other bodily functions below the site of the injury. The severity of the injury is based on its completeness.
- Complete Injuries—a complete spinal cord injury results in a loss of all feeling and ability to control movement below the site of the injury
- Incomplete Injuries—with an incomplete spinal cord injury, a person may have some sensory or motor function below the site of the injury. There are varying degrees of incompleteness.
Paralysis from a spinal cord injury may be referred to as:
- Tetraplegia—also known as quadriplegia; it occurs when the hands, arms, trunk, and legs are all affected by the injury
- Paraplegia—occurs when part of the trunk and the legs are affected by the injury
Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Injury
It is important to be aware of the symptoms of a spinal cord injury. They include:
- Loss of movement
- Loss or altered sensation that includes the ability to feel heat, cold, and touch
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Exaggerated reflexes
- Pain or an intense stinging sensation
- Difficulty breathing or coughing
- Back pain or pressure
If you experience any of these symptoms after an accident, you may have a spinal cord injury and should seek medical attention immediately. A spinal cord injury may not always be obvious, and it is important that the injury is treated as soon as possible to prevent it from becoming more severe.
Contact a Tampa Bay Personal Injury Attorney
If you sustained a spinal cord injury as the result of someone’s negligence, you might want to consult with an experienced personal injury lawyer. At Abrahamson & Uiterwyk, we have over 30 years of experience helping the injured. Contact us onlineor call us at 800-538-4878 to set up your free, no-obligation consultation today.