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Spinal Cord Injury 101

Posted on : August 22, 2017
Alpharetta Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Injuries to the spinal cord are devastating, most often because damage to the sensitive nerve tissue of the spinal cord is irreversible. Below is a synopsis of the different levels of spinal cord injury and who to call if you or a loved one have suffered this type of life changing injury.

Cervical Vertebrae Injury (High, C1-C4)

When a person experiences injuries to the highest four cervical vertebrae, they typically:

  • Lose movement and feeling in the arms and legs
  • Fail to control their bladder and bowels
  • Lose the ability to speak or breathe without medical equipment
  • Need help with simple day-to-day activities like eating, bathing, dressing, and getting up out of bed

Cervical Vertebrae Injury (Low, C5-C8)

A person who experiences injuries to the lower cervical vertebrae may have:

  • A need for all of the above
  • A reduced ability to breathe normally but may retain the ability to speak
  • A reduced ability to move their arms but may retain control over elbows, wrists, and shoulders
  • The inability to voluntarily control bowels or bladder but may be able to use the bathroom with the help of medical devices

Thoracic Vertebrae Injury (High, T1-T5)

A person who experiences injuries to the upper thoracic vertebrae may have:

  • The ability to move the upper body normally
  • Difficulty with activities that use the abdominal muscles, such as coughing
  • The ability to move around in a motorized or manual wheelchair
  • Difficulty using the restroom autonomously

Thoracic Vertebrae Injury (Low, T6-T12)

A person who experiences injuries to the lower thoracic vertebrae may have:

  • The ability to move the upper body normally, including the abdominal muscles
  • All of the above

Lumbar Vertebrae Injury (L1-L5)

A person who experiences injuries to the lumbar vertebrae may have:

  • Loss of bowel and bladder control but may be able to use special equipment to use the restroom
  • Full control of their upper body
  • The ability to walk with braces but may use a wheelchair for the majority of getting around

Sacral Injury

A person who experiences injuries to the sacrum may have:

  • Partial or complete loss of bowel and bladder control and may need to use special equipment to use the restroom
  • The ability to walk but may have some loss of function in legs and hips

Contact an Experienced Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer Today

The higher up on the spine the injury, the more devastating and life changing its effects can be. If you or a loved one are the victim of such an injury, you may be eligible for compensation if someone else’s negligence was the cause. Contact a spinal cord injury lawyer today at Chalker Injury Law by calling¬†(678) 319-9991.

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