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Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Day - know the causes, effects, and when to contact a solicitor

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Every four hours, someone in the UK sustains a spinal cord injury. Whether caused through personal injury or medical negligence, damage to the spinal cord can have a catastrophic effect on a patient’s strength, sensation, and quality of life.

With Spinal Cord Injury Awareness Day on 13 May, Kirsty Meech, Director in the Catastrophic Injury team, and Thomas Rees, Director in Medical Negligence, give their expert advice on spinal cord injury; the causes, effects, and support options.

Causes of spinal cord injury

Put simply, the spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that connects the brain with the rest of the body. It goes through an opening in the backbone called the vertebrae, and spinal cord injuries often result from damage to the vertebrae, the disks or ligaments, or to the cord itself.

Injuries to the spinal cord can be caused by a variety of illnesses or health conditions such as metastases to the spine, accidents including road traffic collisions, falls or slips, or issues of medical negligence such as mistakes during operations or missed diagnosis.

Effects of spinal cord injury

Spinal cord injuries have life-changing impacts on the survivor and the family, and can affect cervical, thoracic, lumbar or sacral levels of the spine.

Effects of spinal cord injury can include:

  • Loss of movement and co-ordination
  • Loss or change in sensations, such as the ability to feel temperature changes or touch
  • Issues with bowel and bladder management
  • Pain or pressure in the neck, head and/or back
  • Difficulty breathing, coughing or clearing the lungs
  • Numbness and weakness in extremities

Getting access to rehabilitative treatment and support can make a significant difference — and as members of the Spinal Injuries Association (SIA), JCP Solicitors can support clients in accessing expert guidance. Whether or not the injury is the client’s fault, our solicitors can help.

When to contact a solicitor

While some clients may recognise symptoms following an accident, many may not realise they have suffered due to medical or surgical injury. It is important to know how to recognise the symptoms and effects of spinal cord injury, as you may be entitled to compensation.

Whether your injury is caused by medical negligence or personal injury, get in contact with our specialist team to out find how we can support you.

Coping with a spinal cord injury

Our team of specialist Solicitors in Personal Injury and Medical Negligence will investigate your claim and gather all the evidence to make sure you get the best possible outcome. 

Because it is not just about money – our teams are here to help you cope.

We can connect our clients to a number of different charities including the SIA. Aiming to be the go-to place for everyone affected by spinal cord injury, the SIA provides support for spinal injury including healthcare at home and house adaptations, mental health, advocacy, and connecting with other support services.

At JCP Solicitors, we also work with medical and rehab experts who provide physical and emotional support. Local to Swansea, south and west Wales, neuro physiotherapists and rehabilitation specialists Equinox Physiotherapy partner with us to provide health services and treatments to support those who have suffered spinal cord injury to regain their quality of life.

JCP Solicitors has highly experienced teams in Medical Negligence and Personal Injury, and the firm is recognised as being one of the leading solicitors in Wales.

For advice on spinal cord injuries, contact Directors Kirsty Meech or Thomas Rees