Spinal Cord Injuries

Each year about 17,000 Americans suffer a non-fatal injury to the spinal cord, the bundle of central nervous system nerves that carries information between the brain and most of the body.  Without a properly functioning spinal cord, the brain cannot get the information required to feel physical sensations, and the brain cannot send the information required to voluntarily move muscles. Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries in younger people, while falls are the leading cause for those over 65 years of age.  Overall, about 78% of spinal cord injury survivors are male.

Typically, those with complete spinal cord injuries  are unlikely to recover much if any function, particularly after the first few days.  Complete spinal cord injuries involve a total loss of motor (muscle) and sensory function.  If the spinal cord is severed, for example, there is no recovery. Those with incomplete spinal cord injuries sometimes recover some function, if treated promptly.  As one physician put it in one of our trials, “time is spine”: with some spine injuries, prompt treatment (typically, emergency neurosurgery) can make a huge difference.

A spinal cord injury should be viewed as a medical emergency requiring immediate attention.  Seek immediate medical care for these symptoms, among others:

  • Loss or sudden impairment of bowel or bladder function or control.
  • Partial or complete loss of control over any body part.
  • Loss of or abnormal sensation in the groin area, or in the feet (including toes) or hands (including fingers).

Survivors of spinal cord injuries often face a lifetime of challenges, risks, and specialized assistance, medical, and care needs.  Those with spinal cord injuries that involve paralysis of both the arms and legs (quadriplegia, usually from an injury to the spinal cord at the neck) typically have a much harder time than those who are still able to use their arms (paraplegia, from an injury to the mid or lower back). While over the decades someone is always predicting a cure around the corner, it hasn’t happened yet. According to the National Spine Injury Statistical Center, the out-of-pocket costs for spinal cord injuries range from the low millions to the many millions of dollars, depending on the age of the survivor and the severity of the spinal cord injury.  These statistics do not include the survivor’s losses of income and their human losses.

A spinal cord injury survivor typically needs a strong support team that includes a neurosurgeon, rehabilitation physician, physical therapists, vocational counselor, and specialized assistive equipment.  Someone who has suffered a spinal cord injury that was caused by the wrongful conduct of another also needs the assistance of a qualified personal injury attorney who has handled spinal cord injury cases all of the way through trial.  Spinal cord injury cases are complex, and often high stakes, because the survivor’s future well-being may depend on the quality of the legal services provided. If you think you have a spinal cord injury case, contact us right away.

Spinal Cord Injury Cases

Partial Paraplegia: Record Josephine County Trial Result

Workplace Injury Leads to Partial Paraplegia: $2.285 Million Verdict.

Lower Spinal Cord Injury

VA System Failures Injures Marine Corps Veteran: $3.25 million.

Child Quadriplegia

Defective Child Car Restraint: Confidential Settlement.

The attorneys at Corson & Johnson have helped countless individuals and families over the past three-plus decades.
Please click on the Read More Cases link highlighted below to see additional Spinal Cord Injury case examples.
If you think you may have a case, please call, email, or text us; we would be happy to talk with you.

Spinal Cord Injury Resources

Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation

Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, a non-profit organization supporting survivors of spinal cord injuries: christopherreeve.org

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke is an Institute within the National Institutes of Health that aims to seek fundamental knowledge about the brain and nervous system and to use that knowledge to reduce the burden of neurological disease: https://www.ninds.nih.gov

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