A spinal cord injury can change your life forever. Accident victims face a long road to recovery, and many never get back to the place they were before the injury. If you were hurt in an accident that was caused by someone else, you shouldn’t be burdened with the medical bills and other expenses that come with a spinal cord injury. A Phoenix spinal cord injury lawyer can help you demand the full compensation you deserve.
When you choose Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer to represent you, you can expect personal attention and outstanding service from start to finish. You will always have direct contact with the attorney handling your case, and we will take the time to get to know you and understand your concerns, goals, and needs. Our Phoenix spinal cord injury lawyer has the experience and the resources to handle these complex cases.
Contact our firm today for a free consultation with a Phoenix spinal cord injury attorney. There is no charge for us to start work on your case. You only pay us if we secure payment for you.
Filing a Personal Injury Claim After a Spinal Cord Injury
Spinal cord injuries could be caused by traumatic events like car accidents, slips and falls, or medical malpractice. They could also be caused by a non-traumatic event, like an infection or disease. To be able to seek compensation for a spinal cord injury, you would have to show that someone else’s actions or inaction caused your injury.
The first step in filing a personal injury claim is speaking with a lawyer who has experience with these types of cases. Your lawyer will need to investigate the accident and secure evidence to prove your claim. Your attorney will determine all possible sources of compensation and thoroughly document your losses.
Your spinal cord injury lawyer will then begin negotiating for a fair settlement. If a settlement cannot be reached, your lawyer should be prepared to seek compensation in court. In Arizona, you have two years to file a spinal cord injury lawsuit after an accident. If you wait too long, you lose your right to compensation.
Demanding Fair Compensation for a Spinal Cord Injury
When you have suffered a spinal cord injury due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to recover compensation for the expenses and losses that you have incurred. At Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer, our Phoenix spinal cord injury lawyer will demand fair compensation on your behalf for losses such as:
- Costs of medical treatment, including hospital stays, surgery or other medical procedures, and medications
- Rehabilitation and therapy expenses
- Cost of long-term care, including home health services, assisted-living services, or institutional care
- Loss of wages or income for missed work, or loss of earning capacity caused by permanent disability arising from paralysis
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of quality of life due to the inability to perform daily tasks or participate in activities, or due to reduced life expectancy from complications of the injury
Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injuries
Some of the most common accidents that can cause spinal cord injuries include:
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries
Spinal cord injuries fall into two categories:
- Complete: A spinal cord injury is considered complete if all motor functions and feeling have been lost below the level of the injury.
- Incomplete: An incomplete spinal cord injury occurs when a victim retains some feeling or motor function below the level of the injury.
In addition to the complete/incomplete categorization, paralysis from a spinal cord injury also falls into two categories:
- Paraplegia: Paralysis affects part or all of the legs, pelvis, and trunk.
- Tetraplegia/quadriplegia: Paralysis affects the arms, chest, trunk, pelvis, and legs.
Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Injury
Following an accident or some other trauma, examples of some of the signs or symptoms that may immediately occur include:
- Severe pain or pressure in the head, neck, or back
- Weakness, coordination problems, or paralysis in any part of the body
- Tingling, numbness, or loss of feeling in hands or feet
- Difficulty walking
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Breathing difficulty
- Odd positioning or twisting of the neck or back
Even when a spinal cord injury has been diagnosed, some of the symptoms that a victim may experience in the days and weeks afterward include:
- Loss of movement/paralysis
- Loss of bladder or bowel control
- Exaggerated reflexes or muscle spasms
- Problems with sexual function or sensitivity
- Reduced or lost feeling or sensation
- Intense pain, burning, or stinging sensation at the site of the spinal cord injury
- Problems breathing, coughing, or clearing the lungs
Treatment for Spinal Cord Injuries
Unfortunately, medical science has yet to develop an effective means of reversing the damage caused by a spinal cord injury. Instead, treatment for spinal cord injuries is focused on preventing further damage and providing rehabilitation to allow injury victims to live as active and independent a life as possible.
Immediately following a spinal cord injury, acute emergency treatment will likely include:
- Immobilization of the spine by using a neck collar and rigid back board
- Respiratory assistance, including intubation and ventilator use if necessary
- Medications to help avoid complications from the injury, including stool/urine retention, formation of blood clots, or respiratory infections
- Surgery to remove bone fragments or foreign objects from the site of a spinal cord injury, as well as to reconstruct and stabilize the spinal column if necessary
- Artificial lowering of body temperature to help reduce inflammation and decrease secondary damage to spinal cord tissue
Long-term treatment will be focused on preventing secondary complications caused by a spinal cord injury and paralysis, such as loss of bone density and muscle tone, spasms, pressure ulcers, bladder/bowel issues, respiratory infections, blood pressure issues, and blood clots. Once a spinal cord injury has stabilized, the patient will begin rehabilitation to maintain and strengthen muscles, relearn mobility and motor skills, and develop adaptive techniques to help the individual perform daily tasks independently.
A spinal cord injury victim may be provided with various medical devices and technologies to help them remain independent, including wheelchairs, computer-controlled electronic devices, or electrical stimulation devices to assist with motor function. When an injury causes pain, muscle spasms, or spasticity, medications may manage those symptoms.
Long-Term Effects of a Spinal Cord Injury
The paralysis that may result from a spinal cord injury can lead to several long-term effects or chronic health conditions, including:
- Increased risk of urinary tract infections and gastrointestinal issues due to the loss of bladder and bowel control
- Increased risk of pressure ulcers and other skin and tissue injury from the loss of sensation
- Increased risk of blood clots, low blood pressure, or potentially fatal spikes in blood pressure
- Increased risk of respiratory infections due to difficulties with breathing or clearing secretions from the lungs
- Loss of bone density and muscle tone
- Increased risk of obesity, diabetes, or cardiovascular disease when paralysis leads to a more sedentary lifestyle
- Reduced sexual function and sensitivity
Finally, permanent paralysis can lead to mental health issues such as PTSD from the accident that caused the injury, as well as anxiety and depression.
How Our Phoenix Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer Can Help You
While you focus on treating and rehabilitating your injury, let our spinal cord injury lawyer in Phoenix handle all the details of your legal claim by:
- Thoroughly investigating the underlying facts and circumstances of your injury and securing all available evidence
- Retaining experts in fields such as accident reconstruction, medicine, vocational rehabilitation, and finance to help us develop persuasive arguments in favor of your claim
- Presenting your demands for compensation to the liable parties and their insurers and aggressively negotiating for a fair settlement of your claim
- Taking your case to trial if litigation represents the best option for securing maximum compensation for your past, ongoing, and future losses and needs
Contact Silkman Law Firm Injury & Accident Lawyer right away if you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury in Phoenix. Our trusted personal injury attorney can review your case for free and explain your legal options.