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Injury to one’s spinal cord can happen as a result of a sudden slip and fall or even a vehicle accident. These injuries unfortunately can be life-changing, snatching away the ability of a person in West Virginia to tie his or her shoes or even use the bathroom normally. An estimated 12,000 new spinal cord injury cases occur each year.

About half of spinal cord injuries occur in those who are between 16 years old and 30 years old. In addition, it’s worth noting that most people who suffer spinal cord injuries — a whopping 80 percent — are men. Vehicle accidents contribute to about 36 percent of these injuries — most of them followed by falling down, violent acts and sports.

The spinal cord is essentially an extension of one’s brain and features many nerves. There are different types of spinal cord injuries, with central cord syndrome affecting a person’s upper extremities and syndrome of the anterior cord affecting the area below the point of injury. Brown-Sequard syndrome leads to paralysis on the particular side that was injured as well as the loss of the ability to sense temperature and pain on the other side.

A spinal cord injury is costly, not only in terms of medical charges but also in the wages that a patient may lose due to being unable to work. A person who has been hurt because of the negligence of another person has the right to try to hold that individual financially responsible for the injuries in a West Virginia civil court. Competent proof of negligence is needed in order to establish liability in court.

Source: jems.com, “Assessment and Treatment of Spinal Cord Injuries and Neurogenic Shock“, Adam Fox, Nov. 11, 2014