Recent news in college sports has highlighted the endeavor that comes with an injured spinal cord. Earlier this month, a football player received damage to the spine in a back injury when he collided with his teammate during a tackle. A stabilizing surgery occurred the day following the injury but nothing has been said since. According to some, that may be bad news.
Another college player who was similarly injured two years ago has experienced some improvements and bodily movement has returned. On the day he was hurt, he received the spinal stabilization surgery and before he came around after the surgery was completed, his family was informed that he only had a 3 percent chance to move his limbs again. In spite of this, he began walking with a walker last week.
His long road to recovery has been tough and will remain so. His injury should underscore the effects of a spinal cord injury, which can happen to anyone at any time, not just athletes. Statistics from the Mayo Clinic report that 15 percent of spinal cord injuries occur due to violence, often in the form of knife and gunshot wounds. Another 25 percent of such injuries are caused by falls that usually involved the elderly. But the majority of spinal cord injuries are caused by motor vehicle accidents-reportedly 40 percent. These accidents often include young males.
More data from the Mayo Clinic shows that 25 percent of these injuries involve alcohol.
Approximately 11,000 spinal cord injuries happen on an annual basis in the U.S, including the ones that occur in Colorado. With an average first-year cost of $200,000, spinal cord injuries can cause a family to become financially stressed, on top of already struggling to cope emotionally. According to reports, it cost can double if the injury occurs to the cervical spine. Filing a lawsuit may give the victim and her or his family some recompense for their recovery process.
Source: NWI Times, "Spinal cord injuries exact a staggering cost," John Doherty, Sept. 17, 2012