Although the two are often used interchangeably, a back injury and a spinal cord injury are actually two different conditions. The spinal cord is the bundle of nerves that stretches down from the brain through the vertebral bones that make up the back (or spinal column).
A spinal cord injury occurs when the spinal cord is damaged by direct trauma to the cord itself or may come from indirect damage via the bones and soft tissues and vessels surrounding it.
Damage to the spinal cord can cause weakness and sensory loss at and below the point of the injury, thus symptoms may depend on where along the cord the injury occurred. The most severe nonfatal cases cause paralysis of the arms and legs (quadriplegia) and paralysis of the lower half of the body (paraplegia).
The severity of the injury depends on whether the entire cord is severely injured (complete) or only partially injured (incomplete). In most people who suffer a spinal cord injury, the cord is intact.
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A back injury can occur to the bones of the spine (vertebrae), the cushioning discs between those vertebrae, or to the ligaments, muscles or other soft tissues. Even if one or more of the vertebrae is broken, it does not automatically cause a spinal cord injury. But, the risk is much higher for such an injury when the spine is damaged, so precaution should be taken.
Sprained or strained ligaments and muscles or damaged or irritated nerves in the back can result in acute pain at the time of the injury or soon thereafter.
A torn or ruptured inter-vertebral disc may cause acute pain that may become chronic back pain. If the tear in the disc is severe enough, the inner fluid can herniate (leak out) and press against, or impinge upon, a nerve that can produce long-term pain and impairment.
Determining the extent of impairment for the person with a back or spinal cord injury is essential for the legal case and one to which the attorneys and staff at Heuser & Heuser are particularly suited. Our years of working with injured people in Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Pikes Peak, and elsewhere along the Front Range and the Arkansas Valley, give us unique insight into the devastating impact such injuries have on the person and family, and we use that knowledge to present a compelling case for our clients.
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Getting fair compensation for a back or spinal cord injury case requires lots of time and patience. The Heuser brothers know this from experience and will never try to rush a client into a settlement. Instead, we make sure our clients know where the case stands and possible options as they develop.
Long-term effects from the injury can be hard to assess because soft tissue injuries need to heal before you can determine what symptoms are permanent. More severe injuries need more time to heal. Proper diagnosis and treatment can take several trips to a doctor or other medical professional, and that’s not to mention the long-term pain or disability a person may face.
The Heuser & Heuser legal team will consult doctors, therapists, economists, and other experts to construct a clear picture of damage from the injury, treatment required for recovery and/or modifications needed for living with the effects of the injury.
In addition, we will work with you and your family and friends, to talk about how the accident and injury have changed your lives. Having the people closest to the person tell his/her story can most accurately show the injury’s true effects.
Of course no amount of money can eliminate the suffering, lingering pain, and often irreversible damage caused by severe back and spinal cord injuries. But, as your attorneys, we will fight to ensure you or your loved one receive proper medical care and ongoing treatment, as well as the right to a life as close as possible to what existed before the injury.
People with back and spinal cord injuries and their families face a lot of struggles, fears, and uncertainty. We at Heuser & Heuser understand the importance of obtaining a financial settlement that will allow you to start getting life back to normal.
Contact us today for free and get started on your case!