Back injuries are some of the most common types of personal injuries. Every day, someone visits a personal injury attorney because he or she has suffered a back injury at work, in a car accident, or during a slip and fall. In order to understand how back injury cases are handled, it is important to understand the facts about them.
The Basics of Back Injuries
Back injuries can take place in one of three places: the spinal cord itself, the bones of the back, or the muscles of the back. Many injuries combine trauma from more than one of these areas; these are known as combination injuries and may affect the whole body. For example, a muscle spasm may involve a pinched nerve which causes pain to radiate down the spinal cord to other areas of the body such as the legs or arms.
In general, injuries to the back typically take one of three forms:
- Spinal cord injuries. These are the most serious and traumatic of all types of back injuries and may mean lengthy hospital stays, long-term or life-long rehabilitation, and even permanent paralysis to one or more areas of the body. SCIs are often treated in a class by themselves due to their extremely involved nature.
- Injuries to bones. Breaking or injuring bones in the back, such as vertebrae, is the next classification of back injuries. These can also be very serious, even if they do not involve the spinal cord. A broken vertebra can lead to surgery, weeks of hospitalization or immobilization, the long-term need for physical therapy, and ongoing pain and discomfort. In many cases, the victim may never be completely pain-free or regain a full range of mobility after a broken bone accident involving the back.
- Injuries to soft tissues. These are by far the most common types of back injuries, but that does not mean that they are not serious or that they cannot interrupt life in significant ways. Pulled or strained muscles, ligaments and tendons in the back can be excruciating and cause long-term loss of mobility or use. Many people end up with a “bad back” that prevents them from enjoying previous activities such as sports or even creates problems with them performing daily tasks. Moreover, back pain is one of the leading causes of the need for long-term therapy, drug treatment, and other medical interventions which can add up to significant, life-long costs for the patient.
In our next segment, we will examine the specific symptoms of common back injuries and how they impact the lives of victims both short-term and long-term.
If you have suffered a back injury, it is important to speak to a personal injury attorney with experience in handling these types of cases. At Barber & Associates, we have a proven track record of helping our clients recover compensation to pay for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other costs. Give us a call today to see how we can help you!