Spinal cord injuries change a person’s life forever, dividing it from “before the injury” to “after the injury.” Many people with spinal cord injuries require lifelong care, and all need significant rehabilitation. An experienced Dallas-Fort Worth spinal cord injury lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve to receive the best treatment and care possible.
Types of Spinal Cord Injuries in Texas
Victims of spinal cord injuries lose considerable neurological function and may become quadriplegic and unable to move all four limbs. If they become paraplegic, they're unable to move the lower part of the body. These are the types of spinal cord injuries resulting from a specific event. Other types of spinal cord injuries may result from infections, tumors, or aging, but these are not caused by another’s negligence or criminal behavior.
How Texas Spinal Cord Injuries Happen
Spinal cord injuries often result from motor vehicle accidents, but any intense trauma can cause a spinal cord injury. You may recall that the late actor Christopher Reeve suffered a spinal cord injury falling off a horse while going over a jump.
Common Causes of Texas Spinal Cord Injuries
- Gunshots and other acts of violence
- Diving into shallow waters
- Sports accidents
The renowned Mayo Clinic notes that alcohol use is involved in roughly 25 percent of spinal cord injuries, whether it involves the victim or the person responsible for the accident.
Symptoms of Spinal Cord Injuries
When a person suffers a spinal cord injury, it is usually apparent that something is seriously wrong. Spinal cord injuries fall into two categories: incomplete and complete.
Incomplete Spinal Cord Injury
In an incomplete injury, the person has some feeling or function beneath the area of the injury. An incomplete injury may not seem as serious right after the accident, but it will get worse without prompt treatment.
In an incomplete injury, the person may experience lack of coordination, numbness, or weakness right after the accident. Time is of the essence—immediate medical attention is necessary to avoid paralysis. Although some progress has been made in repairing spinal cord injuries, even people with incomplete spinal cord injuries suffer serious, lifelong health issues.
Complete Spinal Cord Injury
In a complete spinal cord injury, there is no feeling or ability to move. The paralysis results in either paraplegia or quadriplegia. The person with a spinal cord injury may experience lack of bladder and/or bowel control, difficulty breathing, resulting in the need for a respirator or ventilator, loss of sexual function, spasms and uncontrollable reflexes, and pain from spinal nerve damage.
Spinal Cord Injury Resources
Spinal cord injury patients require intensive, extensive treatment and rehabilitation. Fortunately, the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex offers various options for spinal cord patients. Baylor Institute for Rehabilitation—considered one of the best rehabilitation hospitals in the country—provides spinal cord injury rehabilitation. Another state-of-the-art facility is the Texas Rehabilitation Hospital of Fort Worth. Veterans may receive treatment at the VA North Texas Health Care System’s Spinal Cord Injury Center in Dallas.