What causes spinal cord injuries and what could they cost you?

Whether you suffer an injury on the job or in a motor vehicle collision, you might expect to pay some out of pocket. If the injury was due to negligence, you might expect someone else to pay most if not all.

When it comes to the high costs of spinal cord injuries, knowing exactly what you might have to pay becomes an important factor in a damages case.

The usual causes of SCIs

According to The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, motor vehicle collisions and falls split the bulk of SCI causes at around 38% and 32% respectively. Acts of violence, primarily caused by gunshot wounds, represents 14%. If you work in public safety, each of these may pose some risk in your occupation.

The usual costs of SCIs

The severity of your SCI determines the average cost. In general, the higher up the spine, the wider spread potential paralysis may be and the higher costs of surgery or physical therapy. Motor function damage at any level sees average first year costs around $375,000.

Paraplegia refers to the partial or full paralysis of your lower half and runs an average cost of over $550,000 in the first year.

Tetraplegia, the partial or full paralysis of your body, comes in two forms: low or high. This refers to the specific vertebrae damaged and has a distinct effect on first year costs. Low tetraplegia hovers around $830,000 while high tetraplegia may run as high as $1.1M on average.

Other costs

These figures do not include subsequent years, nor does it factor for indirect costs like wage losses. SCIs level an immense cost on you physically, emotionally and financially. Your best bet is to defend yourself and pay only what you must while any offending party pays what is fair.