Violent car accidents can lead to catastrophic injuries. Some of the most damaging involve the brain and spine. However, if your spinal cord injury was caused by a Missouri car accident involving negligence, you might be able to obtain significant compensation. All you have to do is consult a Kansas City car accident attorney about what happened.
How to Recognize a Spinal Cord Injury
One of the most important steps to take right after a car accident is to assess whether you’re injured. Some medical conditions worsen with movement and leave lasting damage, and this definitely applies when your spine is compromised. The most common symptoms of a spinal cord injury are:
- Loss of movement in parts of your body
- Severe back pain or pressure
- A sense of weakness in your arms or legs
- Lost bladder or bowel control
- Difficulty standing up, walking, or maintaining balance
The best thing you can do is call 911 if you have difficulty breathing or any of the other symptoms above. While it’s critical not to be in the path of oncoming traffic, be cautious about how you move your neck or back because this could significantly worsen your injury. If you’re able to remain safe while you wait for emergency personnel, that’s a better option. All it takes is one wrong move to cause permanent damage. Some spinal cord injuries are lifelong conditions and result in complete paralysis below the injury site.
Is There Additional Compensation for Spinal Cord Injuries?
Dealing with lifelong impairments caused by a spinal cord injury can be one of the hardest ordeals to go through. Since this devastating condition often requires so many major life changes, many people wonder if they can receive additional compensation. Economic damages often cover medical bills, specialized treatment, vehicle repairs, and so on. But you may also be eligible for non-economic damages such as:
- Pain and suffering damages
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
Compensatory damages such as emotional distress can be hard to prove. You might need witness testimonies and therapist notes. This may also apply to whether your spinal injury made you lose the enjoyment of life. Loss of consortium means your relationships have been strained by your injury. You might receive additional compensation for future medical expenses, such as at-home nurse care and physical therapy treatments, depending on how much treatment and care your spinal injury requires. If you missed work or had to quit your job because of your injury, your settlement could also outline lost earning capacity. The valuation of your spinal injury claim is best handled by an attorney with expertise in this area of law and who understands what forms of evidence support the compensation request.