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Spinal Cord Injury And Paralysis

By Expert Author: R. Klettke

Treatment and Long Term Complications



Spinal cord injuries cause one to lose the ability to feel sensation and the ability to move. The severity of the loss of sensation and movement depends on the location of the injury on the spine. A spinal cord injury (SCI) survivor will experience a lifetime of ongoing treatment of different types and medical complications of varying degrees according to the severity of their injury.



If you become paralyzed as a result of someone else’s negligence, a spinal cord injury attorney can help determine what expenses will be needed to pay for care over the lifetime of a patient with a SCI.



(Note: Spinal cord injuries, paralysis and other catastrophic injuries are areas of personal injury practice. When performing your due diligence in seeking the right attorney, you may find the right attorney under such terms as “personal injury attorney” or “paralysis attorney” or “catastrophic injury attorney”.)



Below are just some of the treatments needed for complications a spinal cord injury survivor will face in their lifetime:



Respiratory therapy (RT)



Also known as pulmonary hygiene and respiratory care, RT is crucial and consists of exercises and treatments to improve and heal lung function, chest physiotherapy, assist with coughing, suctioning, and drainage. RT is essential to help prevent pulmonary emboli (PE, or blood clots in the lungs), one of the main killers of long-term SCI survivors.



Physical Therapy (PT)



Physical therapy will keep muscles from degrading, help joints, tendons, and ligaments stay supple, and keep blood circulating. The spinal cord injury patient will learn how to use a wheelchair, how to transfer from bed to chair, and chair to toilet without damaging the skin while sliding the body across surfaces. This skill is crucial, as infected pressure sores aka bedsores, can lead to further amputation and death. Spine injury patients must learn to visually monitor and assess their own skin for infection on a constant basis because they may not notice an ulcerated area until surrounding skin and tissue is dead or dying



Occupational Therapy (OT)



Occupational therapists help SCI survivors remember how to perform “activities of daily living” such as feeding themselves, bathing, dressing, grooming and such basic needs as bowel and bladder care. Effective bladder care management can help prevent illness and death from kidney problems and pressure sores. Spinal cord injury patients who learn to effectively keep their bladder emptied at regular intervals greatly decrease the likelihood of bladder and kidney infection as well as pressure sore infections from bladder overflow on to the skin.



If you have been injured and paralyzed due to the negligence of another person or entity, it is vital to hire a spine injury attorney who is experienced in matters of paralysis. Only an experienced lawyer will be able to understand the challenges and costs associated with this type of catastrophic injury and win the type of settlement or verdict necessary to afford the costs of treatment over a lifetime.

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