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What happens if you are paralyzed in a car accident?

On Behalf of | Jul 14, 2022 | Catastrophic Injuries |

According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, vehicle collisions cause about 1/3 of all injuries that cause paralysis.

Being paralyzed makes it challenging to make a living or perform daily tasks and alters the course of a person’s life.

Types of paralysis

A car accident may cause traumatic brain injuries or spinal cord damage, leading to paralysis. The type of paralysis depends on the location of the trauma. Most injuries fall into one of the following categories:

  1. Monoplegia – paralysis of one limb
  2. Hemiplegia – paralysis on one side of the body, usually affecting one arm and one leg
  3. Quadriplegia – paralysis of all four limbs
  4. Paraplegia – paralysis below the waist

Paralyzing injuries are often permanent, with either a complete or partial loss of feeling.

Long-term effects of paralysis

These catastrophic injuries impact daily life regardless of the type of paralysis an accident victim experiences. Many people endure life-long pain, pressure sores, digestive issues and psychological trauma. Additionally, family members may change jobs or relocate to care for a paralyzed loved one.

Financial responsibility for accidents

Paralysis often leads to financial hardship due to extensive medical bills, the need for specialized equipment and loss of earning power. The injured person might sue for damages if a negligent driver caused the accident. A lawsuit may help victims and their families recover funds to pay for:

  • home modifications such as ramps
  • occupational therapy
  • wheelchairs
  • specialized home equipment such as bathing slings
  • pain and suffering
  • in-home nursing care

Catastrophic injuries such as paralysis change the course of people’s lives. Holding negligent drivers responsible may provide victims and their families with the financial means to adjust to a new way of life.


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