One of the most dangerous injuries you can experience in an auto accident is an injury to the spinal cord. The list of bodily functions connected to the spinal cord is long, and they may be affected if the spinal cord is injured. Here are some of the potential complications of a spinal cord injury you should consider if you are filling a personal injury claim:
Loss of Bladder and Bowel Control
The spinal cord provides the path that signals follow from the brain to the bladder and bowel, and back. The bladder and bowel system rely on these signals, which means it's your brain that actually determines when the bowel and bladder muscles relax and contract. This means you will find it difficult to control your bladder and bowels if the communication channel, the spinal cord, is injured.
As a result, you may find it difficult to empty the bladder, make a bowel movement, or prevent urine from leaking out of your bladder. Apart from medical treatment to deal with the issue, you may also need supportive equipment and material to deal with the issue. For example, you may need a supply of adult diapers to help with the incontinence. The cost of all these supplies and materials should be included in your personal injury claim.
Weight Loss and Muscle Atrophy
It is easy to experience weakened muscles and lose weight if you are dealing with an injured spinal cord. It is not that your spinal cord controls the muscles; it is just that you need a strong spinal cord to be physically active in life. If your spinal cord is injured and weak, you may find it difficult to do any task that requires a strong back, such as carrying weights, bending, or even sitting up straight. This will reduce your mobility, which is bad because your muscles need to be exercised to maintain their strength. You may even find yourself relying on a wheelchair or other walking aids. Remember to include all these assistive devices (think adult walkers or wheelchairs) in your demand letter when making your injury claim.
Impaired Sexual Performance
The third possible complication is impaired sexual health and performance. Apart from the fact that many sexual acts are difficult to engage in with an injured and weak back, spinal cord injuries may also affect a man's ability to get and maintain an erection or ejaculate. Apart from the claiming for the cost of managing this condition, you also need to include loss of consortium damages if your sexual health and performance have been affected by your spinal cord injury. The loss of consortium compensation covers the loss of sexual relations, comfort, and affection that your loved ones are feeling as a result of your injury.
For more information on how to address your spinal cord injury in your personal injury case following a car accident, contact a personal injury attorney in your area.