Commercial truck accidents can cause severe injury or even loss of life. Since these trucks are so much larger than the average motor vehicle, it is almost always the occupant of the smaller car who suffers a serious injury in a collision. One of the more serious injuries that can result from a crash with a semi-truck are spinal cord injuries.
If you or someone you love suffers spinal cord injuries in a collision with a semi-truck that was not your fault, you owe it to yourself to know what your options are to ensure you have the smoothest road to recovery possible. Our Houston and Pasadena truck accident attorneys are here to help.
The Impact of Truck Accidents
Commercial trucks can weigh up to 40 tons when fully loaded, which greatly increases injury risk. In 2019, approximately 118,000 large trucks were involved in crashes that resulted in an injury. The extreme impact of a truck collision can cause a fracture, compression, or dislocation of one or more vertebrae that protect the spinal cord. It can also damage nerve fibers. Following a truck accident, bleeding and swelling may cause further damage around the spinal cord.
The impact of spinal cord injuries can be difficult for the victim in both the short and long term. It can take weeks of intensive medical care for doctors to even determine the extent of damage to the spine, and long-term injury often results in ongoing pain and sometimes permanent paralysis.
Types of Damage and Symptoms in Spinal Cord Injuries
Aside from the complications mentioned above, truck accident victims can suffer from herniated disks. Disks are soft, flexible cushions that rest between each individual vertebrae and stack to form the spine. The herniated disk occurs when some of the inner layer pushes to the outside. This results in pain, weakness, and numbness in the arms and legs. Herniated disks are very painful and serious, and the injury can progress without proper care.
Outside of herniated disks, other symptoms of trauma to the spinal cord include:
- Limited mobility
- Hearing loss
- Pain between the neck and hips or in the back
Living With a Spinal Cord Injury
Living with a spinal cord injury is challenging. Recovery is very slow, and long hours of physical therapy are often required to get back to where you were before the accident—if this is even possible. This can be very expensive and sometimes isn’t covered by insurance. According to the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation, the first year of recovery from a spinal cord injury can cost between $347,000 and $1 million, depending on the extent of the injury. This includes the hospital stay, physical therapy, pain management, and loss of wages from not being able to work.
Outside of physical pain, the mental and emotional trauma that can accompany a spinal cord injury is concerning and can change your life in dramatic ways. Those who have incurred such an injury may experience neurological damage but also emotional effects such as depression and anxiety. According to our Pasadena truck accident attorney, this can be caused by not only the distress of physical pain but also remembering the accident itself and growing frustrated and feeling helpless when the individual is unable to work and carry on a normal life.
What a Accident Attorney Can Help You Get
If your truck accident injury requires going to the hospital or seeing a doctor, it is a good idea to hire an experienced accident attorney. These claims can be worth a great deal of money, but they are not easy to win. The sooner you consult with a truck accident attorney, the more quickly you can get the compensation you need to pay for expenses such as the following:
- X-rays, CT scans, or any other diagnostic testing related to spinal cord injuries
- Emergency treatments performed to prevent further damage to the spine
- Ambulance transport and hospital stays
- Surgery to repair damage or stabilize the spine
- Daily assistance items like wheelchairs or electronic aids
- Any home modifications that must be made to accommodate your physical limitations
- Loss of wages due to an inability to work
Not sure where to turn? At SJ Injury Attorneys, our truck accident attorneys are ready to guide you through the process of building your case to ensure you receive both the protection and compensation you deserve. Contact us today to speak to an experienced Houston or Pasadena accident attorney.