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Understanding your incomplete spinal injury

Incomplete spinal injuries differ from complete injuries in that you may still feel pain or the sensation of touch. You could have some movement but have weakness, spasms or other symptoms. Incomplete injuries mean you retain more of your abilities, but in exchange, you may still struggle with pain or nerve damage.

With incomplete injuries, there's no way to know exactly how well someone will recover. Some people might recover 80 or 90 percent of motion and feeling, whereas others might retain only 50 percent.

Understanding the wait-and-see method

Once you're discharged from the hospital, you may find that you still need help. Sometimes, patients are discharged before they are completely healed. As a result, they're unable to complete some daily tasks due to the weight limits or restrictions they have to follow.

As they recover, the doctors literally "wait and see" what happens. At this time, patients may begin to recover rapidly, or some may see no real changes at all. This helps doctors understand how serious the patients' injuries are.

Pain is a concern for incomplete spinal injury patients

Unlike with a complete injury, people who have an incomplete spinal injury still have some feeling. Nerves misfiring could lead to chronic pain, just as the injury itself could result in chronic pain. New or changing pains help patients and their doctors develop methods for recovery, whereas unchanging, chronic pains suggest a more serious issue.

On the other hand, some patients feel light sensations but not serious pain. That can also be a problem, because they may do more than their bodies are ready for, leading to further injuries. Incomplete injuries also lead to weakness and fatigue due to pain or a loss of movement. In all cases, patients need to continue to work closely with their medical providers to receive ongoing care.

Accident victims who suffer spinal cord injuries may need extensive and costly medical care and rehabilitation services. If you or a loved one has suffered such an injury in an accident, an experienced personal injury attorney may be able to help you obtain compensation.

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