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October 31, 2018. Category: Medical Malpractice

Paralysis and Medical Malpractice

Imagine you could no longer walk. Picture not being able to play with your kids or give them a hug. Envision a future in which you couldn’t make a living or provide for your family. Think about not being able to care for yourself or perform the most basic tasks. All of these things – plus a lifetime of costly medical treatment, rehabilitation, and other care needs – are the reality for the millions of Americans living with paralysis caused by a spinal cord injury.  

While most spinal cord injuries and cases of paralysis are caused by sudden injury or trauma, such as car wrecks, workplace accidents, or sports injuries, paralysis can be and often is the result of medical errors made on patients – adults and infants alike.

When medical malpractice upends lives and families by paralyzing a patient, the doctors and other health care professionals responsible for such catastrophic damage need to be held to account. Those who are suffering need help to move forward with a life that will never be quite the same. The Tampa medical malpractice lawyers at Alley, Clark & Greiwe represent individuals and families whose lives have been adversely impacted by paralysis caused by a medical mistake, fighting tirelessly to get our clients the compensation that can help them recover and move forward with their lives.

Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis

Almost all of our physical functioning relies on the spinal cord. It is the means through which the brain communicates with the remainder of the body. When a spinal cord breaks or is injured, the parts of the body controlled by the damaged area may lose their ability to function and feel, resulting in permanent disability or paralysis.

How paralysis affects a person depends upon the nature of the underlying injury or damage to the spine. Paralysis can take the following forms:

  • Quadriplegia — paralysis of the arms and legs
  • Hemiplegia — paralysis of one side of the body
  • Paraplegia — paralysis of both legs
  • Facial Paralysis — paralysis of the muscles in the face

Medical Errors That Cause Paralysis

There are many errors that doctors and surgeons make that result in life-changing paralysis. Almost all such mistakes are avoidable and preventable if the physician had followed the proper and appropriate standard of care.

Some of the most common medical mistakes that lead to paralysis include:

  • Spinal or back surgery mistakes, such as performing the wrong procedure,  operating on the wrong vertebrae, or incorrectly placing rods or screws. 
  • Chiropractic errors, such as incorrect or overly forceful manipulation of the neck or back.
  • Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose medical conditions which cause paralysis if they progress untreated, such as failing to diagnose high blood pressure which can lead to paralysis-causing strokes.  
  • Labor and delivery errors, such as the misuse of forceps or using too much pressure and force during delivery which can injure a group of nerves in the infant called the brachial plexus, causing the child to lose functionality in the upper body.

Enormous Costs and Challenges

The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center reports that the average yearly treatment costs for people with paraplegia are $537,271 in the first year and $71,172 each year after that. Beyond dollars and cents, the costs of paralysis caused by medical malpractice can be measured in the challenges of day-to-day living, the families who must now make caring for their loved one a full-time job, and the emotional and psychological trauma that comes with life never being the same.

Speak With Experienced Tampa Medical Malpractice Lawyers Today

If you believe a medical mistake caused your paralysis or that of a loved one, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Obtaining such compensation requires the filing of a medical malpractice lawsuit. Such cases are incredibly complicated, with many investigatory steps needing to be taken before you can file a claim.

The experienced Tampa medical malpractice lawyers at the law firm of Alley, Clark & Greiwe are Board-certified trial attorneys and have been recognized by the legal community for their experience and knowledge in litigating claims for persons who have been victims of serious medical errors, including paralysis caused by medical malpractice. Please call us at 813-222-0977 or contact us online to arrange for your free case evaluation.

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