A person who suffers a spinal cord injury is going to have some intensive medical care ahead of them. When paramedics arrive at the scene of the accident, they will stabilize the victim’s spine and neck in an effort to keep the damage minimized. This is often done by using a hard backboard and a neck collar.
The need to keep the spine still continues even after you reach the trauma center where you will receive care. On top of this, the team is going to focus on making sure that your vital signs are stable. This involves making sure you can breathe, which could lead to you being placed on a ventilator if your lungs are impacted by the injury.
The location of your injury ultimately plays a large role in what types of long-term consequences you will experience. The area of the body that’s below the place that’s damaged is where you will have the most impairment. This means that if you have an injury to your neck, a larger area of your body will be affected because you might have paralysis in your trunk, arms, and legs. An injury that’s in your lower back won’t affect the trunk of your body or your arms, but it can affect the legs.
Another thing that the medical team will do is try to protect your spinal cord from damaging itself more. Spinal shock can cause swelling, so doctors will often try to use neuroprotective therapy to prevent this. Reducing a victim’s body temperature and using medications like steroids are often the chosen methods for this.
The cost of this care after your spinal cord is damaged can be very high. If the injury was caused by another party’s negligence, such as a motor vehicle crash, you have every right to seek compensation.