If you or your loved one suffered a spinal cord injury due to another person, company, or entity’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages. At The Mellino Law Firm, we have more than 30 years of experience representing seriously injured individuals and the families of those killed by someone else’s careless, reckless, or intentional actions. Spinal cord injuries are incredibly serious, often resulting in partial or full paralysis. The lifetime cost of such an injury is typically in the millions. Our Cleveland spinal cord injury attorneys can help you fight for a fair recovery and work to hold the negligent parties accountable.
TYPES OF SPINAL CORD INJURIES
In general, spinal cord injuries are separated into two categories: incomplete and complete spinal cord injuries. According to spinalcord.com, an incomplete spinal cord injury is one in which “the cord is only partially severed, allowing the injured person to retain some function.” In contrast, a complete spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord is completely severed, resulting in a total loss of function. According to the same website, incomplete spinal cord injuries comprise the most common form of this injury, making up about 60% of all spinal cord injuries. This can be attributed, in part, to increased awareness of how to respond to spinal cord injuries, as well as better treatment options.
Some of the most common types of spinal cord injuries include:
- Central Cord Syndrome: An incomplete spinal cord injury, central cord syndrome is caused by an injury or damage to the nerves at the center of the spinal cord, resulting in disruptions in the signals carried from the brain to the spinal cord. Victims typically lose movement in the arms and, sometimes, in the legs. They may also experience loss of sexual function, bladder control, and/or bowel control.
- Anterior Cord Syndrome: Another type of incomplete spinal cord injury, anterior cord syndrome occurs when the front of the spinal cord is injured/damaged. This results in sensory and motor problems. Victims typically are able to retain some sensation but may partially or fully lose function.
- Brown-Sequard Syndrome: Brown-Sequard syndrome occurs when one side of the spinal cord is injured/damaged. This often results in loss of movement and sensation on one side of the body. The other side of the body may be partially affected or not affected at all.
- Paraplegia: Paraplegia is a type of complete spinal cord injury that occurs when the thoracic spinal cord is damaged. Victims lose function and sensation in the bottom half of their body (typically from the waist down). Damage that occurs near the top of the spinal cord will typically result in more severe injuries.
- Quadriplegia/Tetraplegia: Quadriplegia (also known as tetraplegia) is a complete spinal cord injury that results in partial or total loss of sensation and function at any point below the site of the injury. Quadriplegia commonly leads to paralysis of all four limbs and is generally considered the most severe of spinal cord injuries.
The extent and severity of a spinal cord injury will depend on where the injury occurred along the spine, as well as various other factors.
SPINAL CORD INJURIES CAUSED BY MEDICAL MALPRACTICE
While spinal cord injuries can occur for a variety of reasons—for example, in car, truck, or motorcycle accidents; as a result of a defective product; or due to a pedestrian or bicycle accident—they are also commonly caused by medical malpractice. This can occur when a surgeon makes a mistake, resulting in severe nerve damage and paralysis.
It can also occur when a suspected spine injury is not treated promptly or properly, as was the case for one woman who was injured in a car accident, according to setexasrecord.com. In this case, the woman’s surgeon waited a day to perform a CT scan and spinal cord compression operation, despite recommendations from a neurosurgeon that the woman receive anterior discectomy fusion. When the woman awoke from surgery, she had lost sensation in her legs and had minimal feeling in her arms. She and her husband filed a lawsuit on April 11, 2011, seeking damages for disfigurement, loss of earning ability, and other damages.
CONTACT OUR FIRM FOR A FREE CASE EVALUATION
If you or your loved one suffered a spinal cord injury due to negligence or medical malpractice, contact our firm for a free consultation. Led by Chris Mellino, The Mellino Law Firm has recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients. You can also download or request our free, easy-to-read guide on filing a medical malpractice lawsuit in Ohio. Our spinal cord injury lawyers in Cleveland are here to answer your questions, address your concerns, and fight for the full, fair recovery you are owed.