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Golitko & Daly

Major Spinal Injuries Can Cause Quadriplegia

By Matthew Golitko on July 22, 2015

A wheelchair in black and whiteHere at Golitko & Daly, we always place the needs of accidents victims and their loved ones first. Having helped numerous victims of construction accidents and injuries at industrial worksites throughout the Indianapolis area, we know just how much an accident can change a person's life as well as the lives of his or her loved ones.

With this in mind, we want to focus on accidents that result in quadriplegia (aka tetraplegia). These sorts of injuries can have a major impact on the overall nature of your life.

Defining Quadriplegia

Quadriplegia refers to the loss of sensation and ability to manipulate the extremities. People who suffer from quadriplegia also experience problems with sensation in the trunk and torso area as a result of the injury.

Quadriplegia is the result of a serious injury to the cervical spine, which is in the upper part of the spinal cord. This differs from paraplegia, which typically involves injuries to a lower portion of the spine and results in a loss of sensation and the ability to move the lower extremities.

Levels and Degrees of Quadriplegia

There are different levels and degrees of quadriplegia, and they are defined by the area in which the spinal cord is severely injured. The higher up the spinal cord, the more serious the degree of paraplegia. A C8 injury refers to an injury at the base of the cervical spine where the neck begins, while a C1 injury refers to an injury where the spinal cord connects to the skull. C1 injuries are the injuries that are most severe.

  • C5-C8 Spinal Cord Injures - Injury victims are still able to breathe and speak on their own and may have limited control over their arms and hands

  • C1-C4 Spinal Cord Injuries - Victims with this degree of spinal cord injury require machine assistance in order to breathe and 24-hour monitoring and personal medical care

For context, actor Christopher Reeve suffered a severe injury to his C1 and C2 vertebrae.

Changes to Your Quality of Life

Quadriplegia will leave you wheelchair bound for the rest of your life, and serious injuries to the upper spinal cord will also necessitate special medical attention to address. Your entire quality of life will change as a result of the injury.

Changes to Your Livelihood

Given the extent of a quadriplegia injury, injury victims will also experience a complete change in livelihood and their career path. A number of people will simply no longer be able to work and have to collect disability instead.

Potential Effects on Mental Health

Given the major changes to your life and livelihood, a number of people who become quadriplegic after a construction injury experience serious depression and other mental health issues that need to be taken seriously. Taking care of these mood and mental health concerns is crucial for future wellness.

Why an Attorney Is So Important for These Kinds of Injuries

Having an attorney on your side is crucial for serious injury litigation of all kinds. By working closely with a skilled attorney, you will be able to receive strong legal guidance throughout your case. This expertise offers clients peace of mind, which is essential when dealing with and coping with a major life change and the challenges that lay ahead.

Learn More About Construction Accident Litigation

For more information about your legal options following a serious construction accident, it's of the utmost importance that you contact our team of construction accident attorneys today. The legal team here at Golitko & Daly will work closely with you and help you receive just compensation in your time of legal need.

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