Spinal Cord Injuries Practice Center

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Frequently Asked Questions About Spinal Cord Injuries

Q: What is a spinal cord injury?

A: A spinal cord injury (SCI) occurs when there is traumatic injury to the spinal cord resulting in a loss of function, such as mobility and sensation, below the level of injury. The part of the spine that is injured and the severity of the injury will dictate how much function is lost. Most spinal cord injuries do not result in a severance of the spinal cord, but in a fracture of the vertebrae that compresses the cord, causing injury.

Q: What are the most common causes of spinal cord injuries?

A: The most common cause of a spinal cord injury is a motor vehicle accident. Other common causes of spinal cord injuries include deliberate acts of violence (such as a stabbing or shooting), falls, sports-related injuries and diseases (cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis and inflammation of the spinal cord).

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Spinal Cord Injuries - An Overview

A spinal cord injury (SCI) is an injury to the spinal cord resulting in varying degrees of loss of function and paralysis, depending on which part of the spine was injured and the severity of the injury. The injury can occur from a traumatic event, such as a motor vehicle accident, or from illness or disease. According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), more than 270,000 people in the United States currently live with a spinal cord injury.

If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury, there are legal options available to you. A personal injury attorney from Culpepper Kurland in Tampa, FL, can speak with you about your rights and options for pursuing a case against those responsible for your spinal cord injury.

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Compensation for Spinal Cord Injuries

If you have suffered a spinal cord injury (SCI) due to another person's negligent acts, you may be eligible for compensation for your injuries. The amount of compensation will depend on the individual circumstances of your case and your state's laws.

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Treatment Options for Spinal Cord Injuries

For the hundreds of thousands of Americans living with spinal cord injuries, current treatment options focus on helping them learn to live with their disabilities and become as independent as their injuries allow.

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The Anatomy of a Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal cord injuries are serious, and it may not be obvious that someone has a spinal cord injury. The treatment given to a person immediately after he of she has suffered an injury to the spinal cord is critical to limiting the amounting of harm done and preventing secondary injuries from occurring.

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Causes of Action for a Spinal Cord Injury

Victims of spinal cord injuries caused by another party's negligence have legal options available to them to seek compensation for their injuries. The type of lawsuit and the amount of compensation that can be sought will depend on the circumstances of the specific case and state law. Some of the types of lawsuits that may be pursued include actions for personal injury, medical malpractice, products liability and premises liability.

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Spinal Cord Injuries Resource Links

United Spinal Association Spinal Cord Research Center
Resource for individuals with spinal cord injuries, offering information on current policy initiatives, adjusting to spinal cord injuries, links to state-specific resources and other information.

Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation
Information on research initiatives, survivor stories, outreach opportunities and other tools for those living with or caring for a person with a spinal cord injury.

Miami Project to Cure Paralysis
The Miami Project is the world's most comprehensive spinal cord injury research center, housed in the Lois Pope LIFE Center, a Center of Excellence at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. The site provides information on the project's research.

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