Dedicated Lebanon Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers
Representing the injured in Mt. Juliet, Cookeville, and across Tennessee
A spinal cord injury (SCI) can be devastating, and it can have a tremendous impact on a person's life. While some people who have sustained a spinal cord injury in an accident may be able to recover some function and sensation, others will never recover and may be resigned to a wheelchair and ongoing medical needs for the rest of their lives.
At Lowery, Lowery & Cherry, PLLC, we are dedicated to protecting the rights of the injured in Lebanon and throughout Tennessee. Our experienced spinal cord injury lawyers have been helping the injured recover compensation since 1962. We offer a free consultation to discuss your case and receive legal guidance specifically geared towards your case, and you will never pay attorney fees until we recover compensation for you. We are here to help you win.
What is a spinal cord injury (SCI)?
Your spinal cord contains a bundle of nerve fibers which connect your brain to the rest of your body. The brain uses these nerves to direct movement and sensation in the body. When you sustain an injury to the spinal cord, it interrupts the pathway of information between your brain and your lower extremities depending on the location of injury on your spine. Generally, the higher the level of injury on the spine, the greater the degree of impairment to the strength, sensation, and bodily functions below the site of the injury.
Facts about spinal cord injury
The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC) reports that there are about 17,700 new cases of spinal cord injuries each year in the United States, and the number of people living with SCI is estimated to be about 288,000 people. The average lifetime costs, which includes health care costs and living expenses for a person living with SCI depends on the person's age and the severity of his or her injury, but the costs can range between approximately $360,000 to over one million in 2017 dollars. The life expectancy of a person with SCI is only slightly below the life expectancy of a person without a spinal cord injury. Mortality rates can be significantly higher in the first year following the injury for those with the most severe neurological impairments.
There have been some advances in spinal cord injury treatments such as an experimental trial in the use of stem cells to restore function and movement, or another promising advancement involving the rerouting of patient's nerves which resulted in improved neural connections and restored arm movement, and promising new drug therapies that have demonstrated cell regeneration in rodents with spinal cord injuries. However, many people with spinal cord injuries face challenges learning to live with the limitations of their injured bodies.
What are some of the common causes of spinal cord injury?
There are many different types of accidents and incidents which can cause spinal cord injury including:
- Sports and recreation accidents
- Heavy falling objects
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents
- Workplace injuries
The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation dispels the misconception that the spinal cord must be severed for loss of function to occur. The spinal cord and the brain work together to form the central nervous system of the body. When the spinal cord is injured, it loses the ability to send and receive messages between the brain and the body and vice-versa. "Spinal cord trauma is more than a single event. The initial blunt force damages or kills spinal nerve cells. However, in the hours and days after injury a cascade of secondary events, including loss of oxygen and the release of toxic chemicals at the site of injury, further damage the cord."
Types of spinal cord injuries
A spinal cord injury might be described as either complete or incomplete. An incomplete injury leaves some motor sensory function below the level of injury, which means that the spinal cord was not completely damaged or disrupted. A complete injury causes nerve damage and obstructs all signals coming from the brain to the body below the injury.
The severity of a spinal cord injury depends on the location of the injury. Tetraplegia or quadriplegia is a result of an injury to the spinal cord in the neck area which causes loss of strength in all four extremities. Paraplegia is a result of an injury to the spinal cord in the thoracic or lumbar areas, which causes paralysis of the legs and lower part of the body.
Spinal cord rehabilitation programs
Spinal cord rehabilitation programs which help patients maximize their capabilities for their life at home, work and in the community. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) reports that people who have SCI might benefit from:
- Physical therapy
- The use of wheelchairs, walkers, and leg braces
- Use of adaptive devices for communication
- Occupational therapy to develop fine motor skills
- Techniques for self-grooming and bladder and bowel management
- Coping with spasticity and pain
- Vocational therapy
- Recreational therapy
Potential medical needs after a spinal cord injury
Because there is a range of spinal cord injuries from mild to severe, so will there be a wide range of ongoing medical needs, depending on the location of the injury and the severity of the impact. A person with a relatively mild spinal cord injury may be required to use a cane to aid in mobility, while a person with a more severe injury might be required to use a wheelchair to get around. Here are some examples of some of the different types of assistance and accommodation a person who has sustained a spinal cord injury might require:
- Accessible housing, or the remodeling of a current home to accommodate a wheelchair and/or hospital bed
- Wheelchair accessible transportation
- Wheelchair ramp and/or lift
- Home personal care aid
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Occupational therapy
How can a Lebanon spinal cord injury lawyer help my case?
If you have been injured in an accident, or because of a fall on someone else’s property, or because of someone else’s negligence or recklessness, if you want to recover compensation for your losses, you must prove that they are at fault in causing your injuries.
You need an experienced Lebanon spinal cord injury attorney who will investigate the incident and gather evidence to support your case. Your lawyer will negotiate with the insurance companies on your behalf, and will work to prepare a compelling case for you. The attorneys at Lowery, Lowery & Cherry are ready to advocate and work on your behalf.
What is my spinal cord injury case worth?
When you have successfully proven that your injury came about because of the negligence or carelessness of the at-fault (defendant) party, our civil justice system offers a remedy to recover financial damages. Whether you and your legal team decide to settle the case or go through a trial, there are a few different types of damages available for the plaintiff including:
- Medical expenses (current and ongoing medical care, rehabilitation etc.)
- Lost income
- Diminished earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
Without the services of a skilled Lebanon personal injury lawyer fighting for your rights, how will you handle negotiating with attorneys for the insurance company? How can you know if the settlement offer is fair? Why not leave this challenging work to a legal team who has been helping people recover compensation after an injury for decades?
Contact a Lebanon spinal cord injury lawyer for a free and confidential consultation
After surviving a spinal cord injury, you need a legal team that is focused on getting the compensation you need. At Lowery, Lowery & Cherry, we are here to represent your interests when you have been hurt because of someone else’s negligence or recklessness. You are welcome to call 615-444-7222 or contact us to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation. We have offices in Lebanon and Cookeville, and work with clients in Mt. Juliet, Nashville, and throughout the state.