Paralysis Caused by Negligence

Man in wheelchair who suffered paralysis due to negligence will need the help of skilled Seattle Malpractice Lawyers.

An injury to the spinal cord can cause chronic pain or paralysis, which is a loss of function in injured extremities, limbs, or body systems. Paralysis significantly reduces a victim’s quality of life and may have life-threatening complications.

Spinal cord injury victims face extensive medical care and rehabilitation, vocational retraining, and the need for adaptive equipment or personal assistance that can cost millions of dollars in many cases.

If you have been paralyzed by an accident in Washington State that was caused by someone else’s negligence, Tinker Law Firm, PLLC can help. Our respected and trusted catastrophic injury attorneys can discuss your case in a free initial consultation. We’ll let you know how paralysis victims can protect their rights under Washington law.

Call us today or fill out our online contact form for a free claim evaluation.

Spinal Cord Injuries & Paralysis

The spinal cord links the brain to nerves throughout the body. Vertebrae – the bones that make up the spinal column or backbone – protect the soft tissue of the spinal cord. A spinal cord injury, such as direct trauma to the spinal cord or damage to vertebrae that affects the spinal cord, can cause paralysis.

Symptoms of paralysis appear below the point on the spinal column where the spinal cord was been damaged. Spinal cord injuries are described as “complete,” with the total loss of feeling and control over body parts below the point of injury, or “incomplete,” which means there is some sensation or ability to move.

Paralysis is further classified as:

  • Paraplegia, which means loss of function in all or part of the legs and pelvic organs. Those with paraplegia have been injured in the spinal cord’s thoracic (between neck and abdomen), lumbar (lower back), or sacral (hip and pelvis) regions.
  • Tetraplegia (quadriplegia), which is paralysis of the arms, hands, trunk, legs, and pelvic organs. People with tetraplegia have suffered an injury to the spinal cord at one of the eight cervical (neck) segments of the spinal column.

In addition to loss of movement, paralysis may cause:

  • Bowel and bladder dysfunction.
  • Sexual dysfunction.
  • Inability to regulate blood pressure.
  • Inability to regulate respiration.

Causes and Effects of Spinal Cord Injury & Paralysis

According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), spinal cord injuries most frequently occur in:

  • Motor vehicle accidents.
  • Slip-and-fall and trip-and-fall accidents.
  • Impact sports (football, soccer, rugby) and diving into shallow water.
  • Violent assaults, particularly gunshot wounds.

Depending on their level of paralysis, accident victims may need assistance that includes a walker, wheelchair, hospital bed, breathing assistance (ventilator), and personal care for help with such activities as grooming, feeding, and toileting.

The NSCISC indicates that someone with “incomplete motor function [paralysis] at any level” faces lifetime medical and living expenses of more than $1 million for a 50-year-old patient or more than $1.5 million for a patient who is 25 years old when injured. A tetraplegia patient could face more than $2.5 million in lifetime coasts if he or she is 50 years old when injured or $4.6 million if he or she is 25 when paralyzed. The total cost of living with paralysis – including lost earnings, lost wages, and loss of enjoyment of life – usually far exceeds these figures.

Under personal injury law in Washington, victims of accidents caused by other individuals’ or institutions’ negligence or recklessness may pursue lawsuits for financial compensation. These legal claims, most often paid through insurance, have the aim of making an accident victim financially whole again.

Discuss Your Case with an Experienced Catastrophic Injury Lawyer in Seattle

Spinal cord injuries that result in paralysis are complicated from a medical and a legal standpoint. It is critical that you discuss your case with a highly qualified lawyer.

The attorneys at Tinker Law Firm, PLLC are experienced in cases that involve paralysis caused by others’ negligence. To talk to our team about your situation, call us today or fill out our online contact form for a free claim evaluation.