According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, an estimated 291,000 people in the United States are currently living with a spinal cord injury. These injuries range from devastating complete paralysis to milder loss of sensations.
The spinal cord is a delicate bundle of nerves that travel from your brain through your spine. These nerves are responsible for sending messages to and from your brain to the rest of your body. Damage to the spinal cord can disrupt these signals and result in permanent or temporary loss of functioning, sensation, and movement.
The degree of impairment is directly related to the location of the injury, and the severity of the damage suffered. Understanding more about the type of spinal cord injury you suffered is a key component to maximizing your recovery. It is also an important part of seeking compensation to help rebuild your life.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
There are four sections of the spinal cord: cervical, thoracic, lumbar, and sacral. In general, damage to the cervical vertebrae or neck will result in loss of sensation and movement to all four extremities. Damage to the sacral or lumbar vertebrae will result in loss of sensation and movement to the lower extremities.
Cervical Spinal Cord Injuries
The cervical portion of the spine consists of the first seven vertebrae in the neck. Since it is the closest to the brain, damage to this area of the spinal cord are often severe. If the injury to the cervical spinal cord is damaged completely, there will be no movement or feeling below the shoulders and neck. This is known as quadriplegia or tetraplegia. Many people with cervical spinal cord injury will require consistent and permanent care for the rest of their lives.
Thoracic Spinal Cord Injuries
The thoracic spine is the upper portion of the back and consists of the next twelve vertebrae. These nerves affect abdominal and back muscles and help you breathe. They are very important for coughing.
Lumbar Spinal Cord Injuries
The lumbar spine is the lowest major portion of the spinal cord. It consists of five vertebrae in the lower back. Injuries to the lumbar spine typically result in loss of function and movement in the hips and legs.
Sacral Spinal Cord Injuries
The sacral spine is located just above the tailbone. It is composed of the five bones in the sacrum. The nerves in the sacral spine control the bladder, bowel, and sex organs.
Contact Our Providence Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers Today
If you or someone you love has suffered a spinal cord injury because of another person’s negligence, we want to be the only law firm you call. Spinal cord injuries are often severe and result in a lifetime of pain and suffering. You may have even suffered permanent disability as a result of your injury. This may mean you are unable to work or enjoy an active lifestyle with the ones you love. At Mandell, Boisclair & Mandell, Ltd, our Providence spinal cord injury lawyers have extensive experience representing spinal cord accident victims. We know the uphill battle you face, and we can help you secure the compensation you need to put your life back together again. Call us today at (401) 283-0745 or fill out our confidential contact form for a free initial consultation and review of your case. We are ready to fight for you and your future.