Spinal Cord Injuries Are Irreversible indicates Personal Injury Lawyer Steven Peck - PLG Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Injury Attorneys in California

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Spinal Cord Injuries Are Irreversible indicates Personal Injury Lawyer Steven Peck

Spinal Cord Injuries Are Irreversible indicates Personal Injury Lawyer Steven Peck

Unfortunately, there’s no way to reverse damage to the spinal cord. But, researchers are continually working on new treatments, including prostheses and medications that may promote nerve cell regeneration or improve the function of the nerves that remain after a spinal cord injury.

In the meantime, spinal cord injury treatment focuses on preventing further injury and empowering people with a spinal cord injury to return to an active and productive life.

Emergency actions

Urgent medical attention is critical to minimize the effects of any head or neck trauma. So treatment for a
spinal cord injury often begins at the scene of the accident.

Emergency personnel typically immobilize the spine as gently and quickly as possible using a rigid neck collar and a rigid carrying board, which they’ll use to transport you to the hospital.

Early (acute) stages of treatment

In the emergency room, doctors focus on:

  • Maintaining your ability to breathe
  • Preventing shock
  • Immobilizing your neck to prevent further spinal cord damage
  • Avoiding possible complications, such as stool or urine retention, respiratory or cardiovascular difficulty, and formation of deep vein blood clots in the extremities
  • You may be sedated so that you don’t move and sustain more damage while undergoing diagnostic tests for spinal cord injury.

If you do have a spinal cord injury, you’ll usually be admitted to the intensive care unit for treatment. You may even be transferred to a regional spine injury center that has a team of neurosurgeons, orthopedic surgeons, spinal cord medicine specialists, psychologists, nurses, therapists and social workers with expertise in spinal cord injury.

Medications

Methylprednisolone (Medrol) is a treatment option for an acute spinal cord injury. If methylprednisolone is given within eight hours of injury, some people experience mild improvement. It appears to work by reducing damage to nerve cells and decreasing inflammation near the site of injury. However, it’s not a cure for a spinal cord injury.

Immobilization.

You may need traction to stabilize your spine, to bring the spine into proper alignment or both. Sometimes, traction is accomplished by securing metal braces, attached to weights or a body harness, to your skull to keep your head from moving. In some cases, a rigid neck collar may work. A special bed also may help immobilize your body.

Surgery.

Often, surgery is necessary to remove fragments of bones, foreign objects, herniated disks or fractured vertebrae that appear to be compressing the spine. Surgery may also be needed to stabilize the spine to prevent future pain or deformity.Experimental treatments. Scientists are trying to figure out ways to stop cell death, control inflammation and promote nerve regeneration. Ask your doctor about the availability of such treatments.

Ongoing care

After the initial injury or disease stabilizes, doctors turn their attention to preventing secondary problems that may arise, such as deconditioning, muscle contractures, pressure ulcers, bowel and bladder issues, respiratory infections, and blood clots.

The length of your hospitalization depends on your condition and the medical issues you’re facing. Once you’re well enough to participate in therapies and treatment, you may transfer to a rehabilitation facility.

Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation team members will begin to work with you while you’re in the early stages of recovery. Your team may include a physical therapist, occupational therapist, rehabilitation nurse, rehabilitation psychologist, social worker, dietitian, recreation therapist and a doctor who specializes in physical medicine (physiatrist) or spinal cord injuries.

During the initial stages of rehabilitation, therapists usually emphasize maintenance and strengthening of existing muscle function, redeveloping fine motor skills and learning adaptive techniques to accomplish day-to-day tasks. You’ll be educated on the effects of a spinal cord injury and how to prevent complications, and you’ll be given advice on rebuilding your life and increasing your quality of life. You’ll be taught many new skills, and you’ll use equipment and technology that can help you live on your own as much as possible. You’ll be encouraged to resume your favorite hobbies, participate in social and fitness activities, and return to school or the workplace.

Medications

Medications may be used to manage some of the effects of spinal cord injury. These include medications to control pain and muscle spasticity, as well as medications that can improve bladder control, bowel control and sexual functioning.

Nursing Home Abuse & Neglect Attorney Steven Peck

About the Author

Attorney Steven Peck has been practicing law since 1981. A former successful business owner, Mr. Peck initially focused his legal career on business law. Within the first three years, after some colleagues and friend’s parents endured nursing home neglect and elder abuse, he continued his education to begin practicing elder law and nursing home abuse law.


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