Vehicle crashes account for a large number of spinal cord injuries (SCI) every year. SCI can be a life-changing injury with lifetime care required.
However, new treatment options are enabling patients to resume fulfilling lives, and university research leads doctors to believe that SCI may one day be reversible.
The spinal cord is located inside the spine or vertebral column. It consists of a bundle of nerves that transmit impulses from the brain to other parts of the body. Damage, from a violent impact such as a vehicle crash, will temporarily or permanently change the normal function of the spinal cord. As a result, and, depending on the severity and location of the damage, the victim of a car crash could experience paralysis of the legs or even of both arms and legs.
Current and future treatment
Today, improvements in emergency care, antibiotics for infection and intense rehabilitation programs combine to limit damage to the nervous system. Recent advancements in surgical techniques, nerve regeneration, cell replacement and neuro-rehabilitation help to restore various levels of bodily functions in SCI patients. As to the future, groundbreaking research at Duke University provides hope that paralyzed patients will be able to walk again.
A vehicle crash victim who must deal with an advanced case of SCI can expect medical costs in the hundreds of thousands of dollars. However, an advocate working on his or her behalf can negotiate for maximum insurance compensation. A settlement should be sufficient to cover current and future medical expenses, pain and suffering and more so that the patient can focus on recovering from this serious injury.