If you suffer an injury to your spinal cord, the physical consequences may be permanent. The specific medical prognosis for a spinal cord injury depends on its location and severity. Those with incomplete injuries may be able to regain some lost function or sensation, but even then, there will be lasting medical consequences for their spinal cord injury.
Physical consequences of the injury are obvious. The injured person will have reduced motor function and sensation below the site of the injury with an incomplete spinal cord injury or a total loss of function and feeling for a complete injury.
There will also be many long-time consequences other than the medical symptoms you have. What are some of the lasting impacts a spinal cord injury can have?
A shorter life expectancy
Spinal cord injuries, especially those higher on the sign or with neurological consequences, have a strong association with reduced life expectancy and increased mortality. The location of the injury and the age of the individual, as well as any pre-existing medical conditions they have, will directly influence how much of an impact their injury has on their life expectancy.
Reduced earning potential
There are federal laws that prevent discrimination against workers with disabling medical conditions. Unfortunately, many companies are able to sidestep their responsibilities under federal laws by making up excuses for why they terminated or didn’t hire an employee with a disabling medical condition. Workers may find that they have fewer job opportunities or that they have to change professions entirely, which can mean a drastic reduction and how much money they earn.
Changes in your daily life
Spinal cord injuries will change many aspects of your daily life. You may need to alter your home or move to a single-story house for accessible living. You may need assistive technology, like a wheelchair or a specialized vehicle.
Beyond that, there will be more medical demands, ranging from frequent visits with your primary care physician to physical therapy. You will likely have increased medical expenses for the rest of your life after a spinal cord injury. Recognizing the long-term impact of a spinal cord injury can help you take the right steps to seek compensation, such as negotiating with an insurance company or filing a personal injury lawsuit.