Most Missouri motorists try to be as careful as possible while driving, but accidents can happen to anyone. Among the worst types of injuries stemming from crashes are those affecting the spinal cord. This is how these catastrophic injuries can occur and how they can affect you.
Car accidents and spinal cord injuries
Upon the impact of a car accident, it’s possible to experience a blow to the spinal cord. When the discs, vertebrae, tissues and ligaments are stretched beyond their limits or face trauma, it could lead to a serious injury. A victim can be left with a fracture, dislocation or even worse.
Spinal cord injuries affect the brain’s ability to communicate messages with the central nervous system. In turn, this can result in a lack of function in certain areas depending on which part of the spine is injured. A person might be left with tingling, loss of sensation or even paralysis. The injury can also be considered complete, where there is a loss of all motor function, or incomplete, which leaves the person with some motor function.
Symptoms of spinal cord injuries
Certain symptoms of spinal cord injuries should be considered an emergency situation. In this case, it’s crucial to seek immediate medical attention. Depending on the type of symptoms and their severity, the injury might even be life-threatening. Any difficulty breathing should be seen as an urgent red flag. Loss of sensation and paralysis are also serious side effects of a spinal cord injury.
If you are unable to control your bowels and bladder, it signifies that you have suffered serious trauma to the spine. Severe pain in your head, neck or back is also a serious sign that you need medical care as soon as possible. A loss of balance and coordination, dizziness and odd positioning or twisting of the neck or back warrant prompt medical attention as well.
A car accident can leave you with severe internal injuries, so it’s always wise to seek medical attention afterward. It might make a difference in whether your injury is treatable.