As many as 4,500 people a year are newly diagnosed with quadriplegia, or lower extremity paralysis, which is an inability to move the body from the neck down due to a spinal cord injury. In most cases, injury to the spinal cord is caused by accidents, falls, illness, or medical malpractice.
Quadriplegia can be complete or incomplete. Complete quadriplegia, which is the total loss of feeling, function and control of the body from the neck down, affects 36% of quadriplegics. Incomplete quadriplegia, which is the partial loss of feeling, function or control of the body from the neck down, affects 64% of paraplegics. In either case, a quadriplegic will require a wheelchair to get around. Many require around-the-clock or 24/7 life support.
The extent of paralysis depends on the location of the spinal cord injury. Generally, the higher up the assault to the spinal column, the more extensive the paralysis. Stated differently, someone with a C2 injury may have extensive paralysis, which likely would be diagnosed as quadriplegia. Whereas, someone with a L3 injury may have less extensive paralysis, which likely would be diagnosed as paraplegia.
In addition to loss of feeling, function and control, quadriplegics commonly suffer from many other complications, including:
- Shooting pains;
- Loss of bladder control;
- Loss of bowel control;
- Muscle spasms;
- Respiratory complications;
- Renal problems; and
- Shortened lifespan.
The lawyers at Bottar Leone, PLLC, have considerable experience investigating, prosecuting and trying to verdict cases involving severe personal injuries, including tetraplegia (quadriplegia). Contact us now to discuss your case or concerns.