A spinal cord injury can be absolutely devastating to both the victim and their family — and motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of these injuries in young people.
Around 17,000 new spinal cord injuries happen in this country each year. The estimated cost of all spinal cord injuries in this country is around $9.7 billion. More than half of these injuries occur to people who are 16 to 30 years old with males making up the overwhelming majority of victims.
Understanding your risks and the consequences of a spinal cord injury can help you remember to take important safety steps when you’re in a car, like reducing your speed and buckling up.
Are all spinal cord injuries catastrophic?
Some spinal cord injuries don’t produce permanent damage, so the patient may recover at least partially from the injury. People who have an incomplete injury, which means they have some movement or feeling below the level of the injury, are more likely to recover than those who have a complete injury. A person with a complete spinal cord injury won’t have any feeling or movement below the level of the injury.
Unfortunately, the costs associated with a spinal cord injury at any level can be astronomical. The victim may need extensive physical therapy and rehabilitation, ongoing medical treatment for the rest of their lives, assistance with their necessary daily activities and modifications to their living space. None of that comes without a price.
If you have suffered a spinal cord injury in a car wreck or a loved one has been injured, don’t try to handle the negotiations with the insurance company on your own. An attorney can advocate for you, help you uncover possible additional sources of compensation that you need and protect your interests.