As an attorney, Richard Gama has helped many personal injury clients who have been seriously hurt in the greater Denver area. From car, motorcycle, and construction accidents to medical malpractice and wrongful death lawsuits, some of the most severe cases helped victims through involve spinal cord injuries. Also called SCIs, most of these injuries cause permanent damage. The nerves affected are those that send messages to the brain for many of our physical functions. This ultimately results in a loss of control over how we move our body, which means the injured often have to change their lifestyle and routine.
How Do Spinal Cord Injuries Affect the Body?
The way that a spinal cord injury can affect the body depends on the location and severity. Your spine is naturally split into four sections, each responsible for the functionality of a specific region of your body. The uppermost section is responsible for your head, neck, arm, and hand movements; the second, your chest and abdominal movements; the third, leg movements; and the bottom, bowel, and bladder movements. In regards to the severity of your injury, it depends on your unique situation.
Causes & Consequences of Spinal Cord Injuries
40% of spinal cord injuries are the result of car accidents. If you were in a head-on collision that affected the third section — the section responsible for leg function — you may suffer from a complete spinal cord injury, which causes permanent damage to the area affected, as well as anything below it. As a result, not only will the functionality of your legs be threatened, but your bowel and bladder functionality as well.
Another major cause of spine injuries at 28% are slip-and-fall accidents. Incomplete SCIs do not completely damage your ability to move certain areas of your body, but a noticeable difference in mobility is present. These may result from an icy sidewalk or a wet floor that isn’t appropriately marked. The outcomes of an incomplete SCI are dependent upon the patient's current and past health, and the victim would still have partial control over the affected areas.