Often, paralysis results following an injury to the spinal cord. There are various forms of paralysis. Paraplegia is one of the different types of paralysis that affects two limbs. Usually, it is paralysis of the legs. Quadriplegia is a paralysis that affects four limbs. An example would be someone paralyzed from the neck down who no longer has the ability to use their arms or their legs. The cause of paraplegia or quadriplegia could vary.

Some conditions that could result in paralysis if not treated properly include permanent loss of use. Paralysis could occur in a gradual onset or suddenly. Depending on the cause of the spinal cord compromise, there may be things that doctors could do to minimize the permanent loss of use. However, the condition must be diagnosed and treated promptly for the best possible outcome.

Following a paralysis injury, it is best to seek help from a diligent attorney. A knowledgeable paralysis injury attorney could review the facts of the case and help the injured claimant recover compensation for damages. Speak to an attorney to learn about the common causes of paralysis injuries in Oak Lawn as well as your legal options.

What Are the Causes of Paralysis?

A catastrophic injury could occur in many different ways. The causes of paralysis often involve a serious trauma to a vital portion of the body. A paralysis injury usually results when there is an injury to a nerve. Nerves carry the electrical impulses from the brain throughout the body. If there is an interruption in the nerve, it could result in a lack of communication from the brain.

Work-Related Accidents

Work-related accidents could result in paralysis. Even with all the workplace safety mechanisms in place, injuries still occur at the workplace. Occasionally, serious injuries that may result in paralysis occur at work.

A spinal injury at work may result from a fall. Other examples of trauma to the spine that could occur at work are crash injuries. Any accidents that compromise the spinal cord could result in paralysis. Unlike a personal injury case, if an individual is paralyzed as the result of a work injury, the worker’s compensation is responsible for certain benefits to the paralyzed worker.

Most importantly, the worker’s compensation insurance must continue to pay the individual while they are off work. Additionally, a settlement could be reached that allows the insurance company to continue to pay any medical bills into the future. This is particularly important since injured individuals frequently need ongoing medical attention.

Paralysis Over Time

Some conditions could cause paralysis over time. Many spinal cord injuries that result in paralysis occur as the result of one traumatic event. However, other injuries to the spine could develop over time, which gradually leads to paralysis. For example, if an individual has bone spurs in their spine that continue to grow, they would eventually cut the nerve, resulting in possible paralysis. This process could take years. To prevent the osteophytes from pinching the nerve to the extent that it causes paralysis, medical intervention to remove the bone spurs is typically recommended.

Effects of Refusing Medical Treatment

If the injured party chooses not to treat a condition, and that choice leads to paralysis, it could impact the recovery of their case. With any injury, especially one caused by the negligence of another individual, it is crucial to obtain medical care. A delay in seeking medical care could have an impact on the recovery of the case. More importantly, an injured individual has the obligation to seek medical attention so that any condition does not get worse.

If the condition worsens as the result of the plaintiff not following through with their instructions, insurance adjusters look at this fact very carefully. It would likely reduce any out-of-court settlement they would have received.

How Is Liability Determined in Paralysis Cases?

Just because an individual is paralyzed does not automatically mean that courts would find someone legally responsible for damages. Negligence plays a role in causing a paralysis injury. For injured claimants to recover compensation for damages, there must be liability. Liability is determined in paralysis cases by showing that the injury was caused by someone else.  Liability means that the defendant did something or failed to do something that contributed to the accident. It is important to consult with a paralysis injury lawyer as soon as possible.

Shared Fault

Liability could be placed upon the injured party. An accident may be more than one person’s fault. Sometimes an accident is a combination of one person as well as the injured person. When the injured individual is partially to blame for an accident, it is considered contributory negligence. If the injured party is found to be less than 50 percent at fault, they may be eligible to recover compensation for damages. Contributory negligence leads to a reduction in the amount that a paralyzed individual receives. If the claimant is found to be over 51 percent at fault, they may be unable to recover compensation from the defendant.

How a Paralysis Injury Attorney Could Help

Due to the serious nature of paralysis, it is essential to work with an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer will investigate the incident and use evidence to prove the defendant’s fault. With the help of an attorney, you may be eligible to recover compensation for damages. Call today to learn about the common causes of paralysis in Oak Lawn and how it could affect your case.