A spinal injury is one of the most serious injuries that a person can sustain in a car accident.
A spinal injury can be a fracture somewhere along the vertebrae or disc herniation that may require a spinal fusion surgery. Spinal fusion surgery is a procedure that requires a long stay at the hospital to allow the back to heal properly. Depending on the location, type, and severity of the spinal injury, there are several kinds of surgeries a doctor may recommend.
Lumbar Spinal Fusion
Lumbar spinal fusion is done in the lumbar region of the vertebrae and involves taking a bone graft from the pelvic bone or another part of the body. The bone is grafted into the part of the injured spine and fused together for a new bone to form. Doctors may also use metal in the spine to hold the pieces together.
The recovery time can be several months and the patient may have to wear a back brace during the recovery period. There are risks involved, such as the body rejecting the implanted bone and an increased chance of developing infections, blood clots, nerve damage, and chronic pain. There is the risk of developing arthritis in the lower spinal region.
Cervical Spinal Fusion
Cervical spinal fusion is performed to stabilize the discs in the vertebrae and spinal column. It involves taking bone from another part of the body and grafting the bones together and promoting bone growth in that area. Doctors may remove discs and graft bones on either side to help stabilize the spinal column. This is a fairly successful procedure and can prevent paralysis. However, it can lead to many of the risks the lumbar spinal fusion has, and it may also cause a stiff neck and loss of normal range of motion.
Getting a Second Opinion
When a doctor recommends having either of these surgeries, it is recommended to have a second doctor evaluate your tests. Make sure you can fully understand the benefits and risks associated with spinal fusion surgery.
Chicago Car Wreck Lawyer
If you suffered a spinal injury in a car accident, then chances are that you will need prolonged and extensive treatment. Surgery, hospitalization costs, medication, and physical therapy run into thousands of dollars. It becomes important to claim all expenses from the at-fault driver. Our Chicago car wreck lawyer can help you recover all rightful damages for losses, including pain and suffering. Call Willens Law Offices at (312) 957-4166 for a free consultation.