Even though most of the cars on the road today have impressive safety features, motor vehicle accidents remain a leading cause of serious injury in the U.S. In fact, according to the National Safety Council, almost 5 million Americans required medical care due to car accidents in 2020 alone.
Because a healthy spinal cord is necessary for everything you do, a spinal cord injury can be catastrophic. Regrettably, it is possible to suffer spinal cord compression in a car accident.
Car accidents and spinal cord compressions
Even though your spinal cord is delicate, you have bones, ligaments and disks that protect it from damage. If your head moves violently during a car accident, though, these can shift and impinge on your spinal cord. The same is true if you hit your head during a crash.
Common signs of spinal cord compression
As long as there is pressure on your spinal cord, you have some risk of developing permanent paralysis. Thus, it is imperative to seek immediate medical attention for any possible compression of your spinal cord.
You should go to the hospital immediately if you have one or more of the following symptoms:
- Pain in your neck, back, arms or legs
- Numbness, tingling or weakness in any of your extremities
- Difficulty performing tasks that require fine motor skills
- Loss of bowel function or bladder control
- Difficulty balancing
Spinal compression hardly ever goes away on its own. Ultimately, while it can be expensive to visit the emergency room, knowing you may be eligible for substantial financial compensation should put your mind at ease.