Understanding the Different Types of Spinal Cord Injuries By Sean Burke on July 26, 2015

X-ray of a spineYour spine protects the nerve bundle that triggers movement and sensation across your entire body. There are two primary types of spinal cord injury. However, any damage to this area typically involves serious long-term consequences. Spinal cord injuries may be classified as complete or partial. Injuries will also vary, depending on the spinal region in which the damage is located. Although spinal injuries can sometimes be the result of another medical condition, they often follow because of someone else’s careless or negligent behavior. If you have an injury because of a car accident, dangerous conditions on someone else’s property, or a similar cause, our attorneys are here to help. Following a complete investigation, we can often obtain compensation to cover medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and diminished quality of life. To learn more about the types of spinal cord injuries, contact our Orange County practice today.

Complete Spinal Injuries

If you have a complete spinal cord injury, this means that the cord is damaged across its entire width. Damage may consist of a bruise, partial tear, or full tear. A compete injury will result in total loss of mobility and sensation below the damaged area. It will affect both sides of the body equally.

Incomplete Spinal Injuries

An incomplete spinal injury occurs when the damage does not extend all the way across your spinal cord. In many cases, you and your doctor will not be able to ascertain the full extent of the damage for six to eight weeks after your initial injury. If you have an incomplete spinal injury, you will experience some loss of mobility and/or sensation. Sometimes, you will have more feeling than movement or vice versa. You may also suffer from a lack of coordination, even if you have strong muscles and full sensation. In some cases, it is possible to recover movement and feeling following an incomplete spinal cord injury.

Specific Location Will Determine Your Symptoms

Full or incomplete spinal injuries may be located on any area of your spine. The location will determine how much mobility you will lose.

  • Cervical injuries are located in the neck. They have the most far-reaching consequences, since you will lose sensation and mobility in both your arms and your legs.
  • Thoracic injuries will affect your chest, as well as your legs. This type of damage is relatively uncommon.
  • Lumbar and sacral injuries will cause you to lose feeling and movement in your hips and legs.

Spinal Contusions

Contusions are the least serious type of spinal cord trauma. These injuries involve limited damage to spinal tissues. It could take the form of inflammation, bruising, or even bleeding. You may experience a significant loss of mobility within the first few days following your injury. In most cases, however, this damage will be temporary, and you should make a full recovery.

Have You Sustained a Spinal Cord Injury?

Obviously, spinal cord injuries can have devastating and even tragic consequences for life. If your injury is the result of someone else’s negligence or reckless behavior, you are likely entitled to financial compensation. Attorney Burke will fight tirelessly on your behalf. In many cases, he can also obtain funds to help during this time and, if needed, during the years to come.

Contact The Law Offices of Sean M. Burke

If you have a spinal cord injury, contact us to schedule a case evaluation.

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