Spinal injuries are among the worst. They can lead to debilitating pain and threaten your ability to walk, use your arms or even control your own vital organs. When the spinal cord is damaged, time is of the essence. The sooner you receive care, the better the outlook will be.
Spinal cord injuries do normally change a person's strength, sensation or other body functions permanently. The extent of the injury can often be lessened if there is immediate medical care provided. For example, if you are in a car crash and suffer a spinal injury to your lower back, it will worsen with swelling. If you reach the hospital quickly, your medical provider can give you medications to reduce the inflammation and hopefully prevent further damage.
What should you know about spinal injuries?
One thing to keep in mind is that there are two types. If you have a complete injury, that means that the sensation and ability to control your motor functions below the point of injury is completely lost. If the injury is incomplete, you may retain some abilities below the point of injury.
If you suffer from paralysis as a result of your injury, you may have paraplegia or tetraplegia. They are slightly different. Tetraplegia means that you have paralysis that affects your arms, legs, pelvic organs and hands. Paraplegia affects the trunk, pelvic organs and legs.
A spinal injury is life-changing. If you're hurt and suffer a disabling injury, remember that you can hold the other party liable for the injuries you've suffered and the care you need.