Depending on the types of vehicles involved and the speed at which they were traveling, a collision can have catastrophic consequences for both the vehicle occupants and their entire family. Severe crashes could result in head injuries, brain damage, spinal cord damage, amputation, paralysis and crush injuries. These conditions could lead to a lifetime of pain and diminished quality of life.
An individual who suffers spinal cord damage could suffer paralysis in various levels of severity. In general, paralysis is defined as either temporary or permanent and either complete or incomplete. Complete paralysis, in this case, refers to situations where the victim suffers the loss of both sensation and motor control to the affected limbs. Conversely, incomplete means the victim retains a certain amount of sensory and/or motor function in an affected area.
Based upon the position on the spinal column the injury occurs, the paralysis can affect different body regions.
- Paraplegia: Occurring lower on the spinal cord, this injury generally affects the legs, pelvic organs and parts of the body trunk.
- Quadriplegia: Also known as tetraplegia, this paralysis affects a significant portion of the body. In general, the arms, legs, hands, feet, trunk and various internal organs are dramatically impacted by the damage to the upper portion of the spinal cord.
It is important to note that the true impact of the injury might not be immediately apparent. Similar to a traumatic brain injury (TBI), some symptoms might get progressively worse over time. It is crucial that you see a doctor for a careful and thorough examination of any damage and all potential injuries after a motor vehicle collision. Do not hesitate to discuss your case with an experienced legal professional.