Man with quadriplegia in a wheelchair.

What Is Quadriplegia?

When someone experiences an injury to the cervical spinal cord, it can sometimes cause the partial or total loss of function of all four limbs and the torso. This is called quadriplegia (also called tetraplegia). A severe form of paralysis, quadriplegia often necessitates 24-hour care, nursing assistance, and the use of medical devices/aids. 

The cervical spine is made up of 7 vertebrae, C1-C7, located between the base of the head and the middle of the shoulder blade. These vertebrae protect the spinal cord which passes through the middle of each vertebrae. Quadriplegia/tetraplegia occurs when the spinal cord between the C1-C7 vertebra is damaged. When this area of the spinal cord is either severed or stretched too far, it can cause the loss of function in all limbs by blocking signals to and from the brain. 

Car accidents are one of the most common causes of quadriplegia.

Issues Associated with Quadriplegia

There are many issues that are associated with quadriplegia. Such issues may include:

  • Loss of motor and sensory function to arms and legs;
  • Complications with controlling the bladder;
  • Complications with controlling the bowels;
  • Loss of sexual function;
  • Difficulty with digestion; and
  • Difficulty breathing. 

Quadriplegia can also result in numbness or neuropathic pain. But the exact effects of quadriplegia, however, are dependent upon the specific level at which the spinal cord has been injured. Generally speaking, people with C1-C4 quadriplegia have no function in the arms or legs while those with C5 or below quadriplegia with have some function in their arms. The most serious injuries occur when the spinal cord has been injured at the C1 level. This often impacts everything from the neck down, necessitating a ventilator to help with breathing. 

However, the severity of damage to the cellular structures of the cervical spinal cord can cause a range of results regarding one’s injury. Contrary to popular belief, not all quadriplegics lose movement to all extremities; sometimes movement is possible to a certain degree. 

You Deserve Compensation

Quadriplegia is life-changing in many ways. Those living with quadriplegia often require hired help and sustain mounting medical bills and a loss of income. Unfortunately, one of the only ways to obtaining adequate compensation is by filing a lawsuit against the responsible insurer and/or at-fault driver. If you are living with quadriplegia as a result of a motor vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for the following:

  • Medical bills and expenses
  • Long-term care/rehabilitation
  • Adaptive devices (i.e. wheelchairs, ramps, etc.)
  • Home accommodations
  • Pain and suffering
  • Work loss/excess work loss

The Attorneys at Miller & Tischler, P.C. Can Help

If you or a loved one has suffered quadriplegia due to the negligence of someone else, you and your family should not have to be bare the burden alone. When you are already dealing with so much, the last thing that you want to do is to have to worry about tackling the legalities of your situation.

The Michigan personal injury attorneys at Miller & Tischler, P.C. will fight for the compensation that you deserve. We understand the seriousness of your injury and the physical, emotional, and financial hardships that you have endured and will continue to endure. We will gather the necessary evidence and build a case to achieve the most optimal outcome. To learn more or to schedule a free consultation, contact us today!