Do Back and Spine Injuries Delay Accident Recovery?
Are back and spine injuries delaying your accident recovery? After an accident that causes severe injuries, a victim loses precious time, and quality of life. Lost wages, job loss, and isolation from family and friends commonly occur with severe injury. After recovery on the medical side, a victim should be able to return to daily life after a short healing period.
What happens, however, when certain injuries delay recovery on the medical side? What are the back and spine injuries? How do they delay recovery time? This Shaked Law Firm article will provide the answers to what comes next in these cases.
How do Spinal Cord Injuries result from an accident?
Spinal Cord Injuries (“SCI”) as a result of accidents cause damage to the central nervous system (“CNS”). The central nervous system itself is deep within the spinal cord. The CNS is responsible for everything from feeling hunger to breathing. An SCI can be devastating. That’s because the injuries resulting from damage to the spinal cord prevent the central nervous system from conveying signals to the brain appropriately.
These CNS signals control everything. From bodily sensation, the ability to breathe, eat, walk, run, jump, to thinking, and life skills. When these signals are interrupted because the spinal cord suffers an injury, this is traumatic to the body. Any SCI is, from both medical and legal standpoints, to be catastrophic. Violent acts such as a blow to the spine from a gunshot or sports injuries such as football tackles are common causes of SCI.
Can birth defects cause SCI?
Sometimes, children are born with Spinal Cord Injuries that causes developmental delays. These are delays such as Cerebral Palsy, paralysis from birth or shortly after from improper birthing methods, or a number of genetic defects. These birth defects, if another person causes them, could mean a family receives compensation. A lawyer familiar with the laws surrounding specific childhood SCI is necessary in these cases.
Spinal Cord Injuries can be catastrophic in nature.
What is a catastrophic injury?
Under normal circumstances, it’s well established that surgical mistakes usually fall under Medical Malpractice or Medical Negligence. Each of these cases is depends upon the specifics of the injuries. Not every injury is catastrophic, but some are. The only way to determine the severity of an injury is with proper medical advice. On the legal side, any details of Medical Malpractice cases require private consultation with a Board Certified Personal Injury lawyer.
There are three ways lawyers are able to determine if injuries are catastrophic:
- Medical malpractice. This can be healthcare provider negligence, a doctor’s misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose, or a surgical error. Any failure to uphold the standard of care can result in extreme bodily injury. Injurious behavior due to medical negligence can even lead to wrongful death. For this reason, medical malpractice is catastrophic.
- Product liability lawsuits. These lawsuits arise when defective products reach consumers before a manufacturer can fix the problem. If a defective car is on the market and brakes fail, this defect causes injuries or fatalities. A car being defective is so extreme, it would classify any injuries as a result of defects, catastrophic. Read more: Steps to Take After Florida Auto Accident?
- Traumatic Brain Injury and Spinal Cord Injury are two of the most catastrophic injuries. These injuries can be the result of car accidents, motorcycle accidents, or Negligent Security accidents. Sustaining a TBI or a Spinal Cord Injury is always catastrophic. No matter the circumstances under which these injuries occur, a victim endures pain and suffering.
Read on to learn about several other back and spine injuries that may not be catastrophic, but still result in severe pain and suffering.
What are disk herniation injuries?
Vertebrae of the spine are protected by “rubbery” or “jelly-like” cushions. A disk herniation can be a problem with the “jelly-like” cushions acting as shock absorbency for the spine. A herniation can cause inflammation to the spinal nerves which can in turn causes severe pain and suffering. However, pain isn’t the only symptom found in disk herniation injuries.
Symptoms of disk herniation
- Pain in the extremities: if a victim has a herniated disk in their lower back (lumbar region) they may typically feel intense, burning pain in the buttocks, calf, or thigh. In extreme cases, the feet and toes suffer loss of sensation. However, if a victim has a herniated disk in their neck (cervical region), they’ll most likely suffer pain in their shoulders and arms. This pain can be “shooting pain”. It can worsen depending on position (sitting or standing).
- Numbness or a tingling sensation in hands, fingers, toes or feet: This is a common symptom of disk herniation. Numbness or tingling in the extremities can be uncomfortable. Its cause is usually due to impingement or inflammation of affected nerves. Nerve inflammation also leads to severe pain and complications, namely CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome).
- Muscle weakness: nerves provide strength to muscles, and therefore when they become inflamed by a herniated disk injury, you may suffer muscle weakness and atrophy (deterioration of muscle). Those affected by muscle weakness due to a herniated disk may be at-risk for falling and must take care when using stairs or attempting to stand up, or perform other tasks such as getting in or out of the bathtub.
How does injury resulting in CRPS delay accident recovery?
Sometimes, surgical intervention for disk herniation can lead to a longer, more complex recovery period for a victim. This means time out of work and the inability to pay medical expenses. Any type of surgical intervention can prolong recovery. However, back and spine surgeries have a track record for very long recovery periods. Thus, victims’ lawyers should be doing everything they can to obtain maximum compensation.
CRPS is seen frequently in victims who sustain injuries in auto accidents. This type of injury also adds time to recovery on the medical side.
There are other reasons for CRPS in the back and spine, too. If Medical Malpractice occurs, a victim can wake from surgery with injuries due to surgical error or Negligence. This means a surgical tool inside the body, wrong limb amputation or operation, or nerve damage. If negligence occurs on the doctor’s part, he or she may be liable for Medical Malpractice.
Therefore, it’s important to seek legal advice as quickly as possible after experiencing any distressing symptoms after an auto accident or medical procedure. Surgery is an option that is curative or provides relief of pain. After an accident, surgical intervention is an option when conservative methods of treatment fail entirely. If, however, a Misdiagnosis or surgical error occurs, the patient’s life may become worse.
What happens on the legal side, after a Florida accident resulting in injuries?
Sometimes back and spine injury resulting from an auto accident are permanent or catastrophic. TBI, Spinal Cord Injury, broken vertebrae or disk herniation are all life threatening. Thus, the amount of compensation must be the maximum under state law. It’s important to consult with a Personal Injury lawyer once a stable medical recovery begins on the medical side.
Disclaimer: Patients should always discuss bothersome symptoms with a licensed medical professional, and one should never rely on articles found via the internet when making important medical decisions. This article has no intention to replace the advice of a licensed doctor.