Every year, over 12,000 people survive spinal cord injuries. Many of these injuries are due to vehicle accidents, sports, medical mistakes, sports, falls and violence. A spinal cord accident is truly catastrophic. Most spinal cord injury survivors will face significant expenses. And medical expenses are just the tip of the iceberg. There are additional and hidden costs that most people don’t think about.
Spinal Cord Injury Medical Expenses
Medical expenses for a severe spinal cord injury often exceed millions of dollars. The type of medical assistance and the severity of the spinal cord injury affect the costs. Some of the most common medical expenses for a spinal cord injury include:
- Spinal cord surgery
- Traumatic care like the use of a ventilator
- Physical therapy, speech therapy, mental health counseling sessions, and occupational therapy
- Medical equipment, such as wheelchairs
- Long-term health care in a facility or in-home aides
- Medications, including painkillers
Those victims with high tetraplegia can anticipate to shell out about 1 million for care. Spinal cord injuries with incomplete motor function due to tetraplegia cost over $150,00 per year. Paraplegia runs around $70,00 per year in medical costs.
Hidden Expenses of Spinal Cord Injuries
The astronomical costs for spinal cord injuries due to medical costs are just the beginning. Some victims require the help of loved ones who must pay for plane tickets and stay at hotels. Some spinal cord injury victims need to travel out of town to get medical care. Hidden incidentals that you don’t think about also include court costs and dining out on the way to and from medical care.
Earning Potential and Lost Wages
After a spinal cord injury, earning ability can be diminished. About 11 percent of those with a spinal cord injury retain a job, but many are unable to retain the same position and must settle for less money. In 2012, the average wage for those working with a spinal cord injury was about $25,000. And if the victim was young when the accident occurred, the loss in earning potential can easily tally up to over 1 million. Those who earned more can expect to lose more. And if your employer doesn’t pay you when you’re out of work recovering from a spinal cord injury, you lose more significant income.
Long-Term Costs of a Spinal Cord Injury
Often, it’s tough to consider the long-term costs of a spinal cord injury because the victim is so focused on just surviving the injury. Long-term costs that are often not considered include:
- Long-term health issues of things like respiratory infections. Survivors of a spinal cord injury are more likely to have health-related issues.
- Mental health services are also often needed by survivors of a spinal cord injury.
- Home modifications may also be needed. Ramps and elevators may have to be installed.
- Additional equipment like wheelchair-accessible vans may be needed by the victim.
When valuing a spinal injury case, an attorney will often consider your pain and suffering, lost wages and court costs. As you can see, the costs of a spinal cord injury go way beyond the physical ramifications. When you are focused on recovering from a spinal cord injury, the last thing you want to think about is money.
How an Attorney Can Help With a Spinal Injury Case
An attorney can assist you with filing a lawsuit and reaching a settlement. If a settlement cannot be reached out of court, an attorney will prepare a strong case to get the biggest settlement with a trial. Plus, an attorney will have a team of investigators and medical experts to help support your case. And if you run into issues with Medicare or Medicaid, an attorney can assist you with those issues, too. A good lawyer is also your confidant and trusted adviser. They will help you with anything that you need.
If you or a loved one has incurred a spinal cord injury, turn to the spinal cord injury attorneys at Terry Bryant Accident and Injury. Spinal cord injuries are some of the most severe injuries that a person can occur and you should be able to get fair compensation for all of your damages. The attorneys at Terry Bryant Accident and Injury know what you’re facing when it comes to pain and suffering, inability to work, medical expenses, and more. They will aggressively fight to get you the settlement you deserve, including future medical expenses. They know all about pharmaceutical bills, adaptive equipment, therapy, and loss of income associated with incurring a spinal cord injury. These legal experts will handle all of the legal details for you so you can focus on recovering from your injury. They will get you the settlement you need to cover all of your costs. If you or a loved one has incurred a spinal cord injury due to an accident, turn for help to the Terry Bryant Accident and Injury Law Firm.