Spinal cord injuries are catastrophic medical conditions that can result from various accidents or trauma. These can stem from motor vehicle crashes, slip-and-fall incidents and other causes.
Anyone with one of these injuries must learn as much as possible about them. This effort will allow them to make more informed decisions about their care and therapies.
Complete spinal cord injuries
Complete spinal cord injuries involve total severing of the spinal cord. It results in a complete loss of motor and sensory function below the injury level. Individuals with complete spinal cord injuries often face paralysis.
Paralysis is a complete loss of sensation, meaning affected individuals can’t feel touch, temperature or pain in the affected areas. The person loses voluntary muscle control. This leaves them unable to move or perform tasks below the injury site. Because the nerves are entirely severed, the chance of recovery is less than that of an incomplete injury.
Incomplete spinal cord injuries
Incomplete spinal cord injuries involve partial damage to the spinal cord. This allows for varying motor or sensory function degrees below the injury level. These injuries manifest in a wide range of symptoms and functional deficits.
Some individuals retain partial sensation or motor function, while others have limited mobility. Unlike complete injuries, incomplete spinal cord injuries offer a more significant potential for recovery.
Treatment and therapy
Rehabilitation, physical therapy and medical interventions may help improve function over time. Treatment plans for these injuries are highly individualized, tailored to the specific needs and abilities of the patient, and often involve a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals.
Victims of incidents caused by another’s negligence that lead to a spinal cord injury may opt to pursue a compensation claim. Working with someone who can assist them with getting their case together can enable them to focus on healing while also benefitting from a focused case for compensation.