Protected by the vertebrae, the spinal cord transmits signals between the body and the brain and is indispensable to healthy human function. When traumatic impact crushes the vertebrae, the spinal cord inside can become damaged or severed completely – often resulting in paralysis.
The two most common causes of spinal cord injuries are motor vehicle accidents and falls, and so someone else’s carelessness or recklessness may be to blame if you or a loved one has been hurt. If so, speaking to a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as possible could be a critical first step to securing compensation. A Rapides Parish spinal cord injury lawyer could help you navigate the legal process and advocate tirelessly on your behalf.
Every year, there are about 17,700 new spinal cord injuries in the United States. Approximately 80 percent of these cases affect males, and adults between 16 and 30 years of age, as well as those over 65, are most at risk. Together, vehicle crashes and falls account for about 70% of spinal cord injuries.
These injuries can turn a victim’s life upside down in an instant. Depending on both the severity and location of the injury, a victim may lose some or all feeling and the ability to voluntarily move the affected area. Typically, injuries occurring further down the spinal column will result in paraplegia, impacting the legs, pelvic organs, and all or part of the trunk. Injuries higher up the spinal cord can lead to quadriplegia, which also impacts the arms, hands, and the rest of the trunk.
Lack of feeling and mobility are not the only problems that spinal cord injury victims face. Bowel, bladder, and sexual dysfunction are often present, as are blood clots and bed sores. In the worst cases, a victim’s heart and lungs are impacted, requiring a pacemaker and mechanical ventilator.
Given the devastating nature of these injuries, recovering compensation in a spinal cord injury lawsuit could be essential to a victim’s future. Fortunately, a Rapides Parish spinal cord injury attorney is available to advocate for a victim’s interests.
These life-altering injuries can take their toll on victims and their families. Spinal cord injury victims may be left unable to perform the most basic life tasks, such as eating, drinking, washing, and clothing themselves without the assistance of family members or around-the-clock home care. The sudden need to rely on others for the simplest, as well as most intimate, functions can feel degrading and may trigger depression and anxiety.
Additionally, spinal cord injuries can be extremely expensive. Victims are often unable to work, whether temporarily or permanently, at a time when they income the most. On top of everyday expenses, injury-related costs can be exorbitant. Hospital bills, rehabilitation, nursing care, and home modifications come at a steep price. The financial burden can be crushing, and it comes at a time when victims deserve to focus on their health.
Recovering compensation could alleviate financial concerns and ensure access to long-term or permanent medical care. A Rapides Parish attorney experienced in spinal cord injury cases could review the facts of your case, examine your medical records, identify all possible defendants, and devise a course of action to recover monetary damages.
This compensation could cover all your current and future injury-related expenses, as well as pain and suffering, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life. If you were injured in a motor vehicle crash involving alcohol, you may also be entitled to recover punitive damages, which are intended to punish the defendant for illegal conduct.
Louisiana law allows spinal cord injury plaintiffs just one year to file a lawsuit, so reach out to a Rapides Parish spinal cord injury lawyer today to learn more about your legal options.