Your back (vertebra, disks, and spinal cord) are among your most active body parts without you ever really noticing how they function. In fact, you may not realize how much they do until they don’t. When your back is injured, you may suffer from ongoing pain or an inability to lift, carry, and stand up straight. If your back injuries affect your spinal cord, then things can be much worse. You may end up paralyzed and permanently disabled. You may require ongoing treatment and physical therapy, or you may end up in a wheelchair or bedridden. Fortunately, the vast majority of back injuries in workers’ compensation claims do not involve paralysis. Rather, you are more likely to end up with long term pain and weakness. This sounds bad, but it is certainly better than the worse outcomes we’ve discussed. Your back pain can be treated with medication, a brace, physical therapy, epidural steroid injections, and in some cases, surgery. There is a good chance that you will be out of work and will require ongoing medical treatment. This is where you need to file a workers’ compensation claim for benefits to cover your medical needs and lost wages.
Different Types of Back Injuries in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Workers’ Compensation Claims
There are so many things that can happen to your back at work. You could injure it by lifting something,
maneuvering something, or falling down. You could sustain injuries in an auto accident on your job, or by simply bending the wrong way. Following are some of the most frequently seen back injuries in Spartanburg, South Carolina, workers’ compensation claims:
- Pulled Muscles
- Strained Tendons
- Torn Ligaments
- Sprained Muscles, Tendons, or Ligaments
- Ruptured Discs
- Herniated Discs
- Fractured vertebra
- Spinal Cord Damage
When Spinal Injuries Result in Paralysis in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Work Accidents
One of the worst possible outcomes in a Spartanburg, South Carolina, work accident is when a spinal cord injury causes paralysis. This outcome is only slightly better than a case where a spinal cord injury causes death. Yet, those who end up paralyzed by beg to differ on which was the worst outcome. Depression is one of the frequently seen symptoms when paralysis occurs, because the person’s life is completely altered. Not all spinal cord injuries result in paralysis, but those that do will impact the rest of the person’s life and will require ongoing treatment. The person may be partially paralyzed, as a paraplegic, with only the lower half of their body paralyzed. Or the person may be fully paralyzed, as a quadriplegic, with everything paralyzed from the neck down. In some cases, a paraplegic or quadriplegic person will still have some functioning, though it is significantly impaired.
If you end up paralyzed by a work accident, then you can receive workers’ compensation benefits for the medical treatment, medical devices, any necessary surgeries, and the ongoing nursing that will be needed to get through the days. You will not be able to work again in most cases of paralysis, so you can get wage benefits and ongoing disability payments, when the situation is this severe. Unlike other workers’ compensation injuries, if you become paralyzed as a result of the accident you are entitled to lifetime benefits and the 500 week limitation does not apply.
There Are Many Other Spinal Cord Syndromes that Can Arise from Work Injuries
Beyond the more frequently seen work related back injuries and spinal cord injuries, there are also a number of spinal cord syndromes that could also occur. Following are some examples of spinal cord syndromes that could interrupt your work and your life, and which you could recover workers’ compensation benefits for if they happen to you:
- Brown-Sequard Syndrome
- Conus Medullaris Syndrome
- Cauda Equina Syndrome
- Central Cord Syndrome
- Posterior Cord Syndrome
- Anterior Cord Syndrome
These syndromes could require medication, medical devices, surgical treatment, physical therapy, and a significant amount of time off work. In some cases, they prevent you from working at all. Fortunately, if you suffer from a back or spinal injury that is related to a work related accident, you can seek workers’ compensation benefits to cover all of those expenses and losses. However, you cannot recover compensation for your pain and suffering or lost quality of life from a workers’ compensation claim. Workers’ compensation will only cover your medical expenses and your wage benefits at two-thirds of your average weekly wage, as calculated based on the months preceding the accident.
You May Also Have a Third Party Personal Injury Claim for Back Injuries
In cases where a third party was also liable for your injury, meaning anyone who is not a co-worker, a boss, or in any way related to your employer, you may be able to pursue a third party personal injury claim. This is common in cases where a person is injured in an auto accident or on the premises of someone else while they are performing work related tasks. If you must go the homes or businesses of others in your line of work, then you may be injured by a premises liability hazard. If you are driving for work related purposes when the injury occurs through an auto accident, then you may have an auto accident claim against the negligent party. If this is the case, then you could also recover compensation for pain and suffering, the rest of your lost wages, and your loss of enjoyment of life.
Contact Double Aught Injury Lawyers to Schedule a Free Consultation in Spartanburg, South Carolina
If you have suffered from a back or spinal cord injury at work, then you may need an attorney to help you recover the medical and wage benefits that you need and deserve. Contact the attorneys at Double Aught Injury Lawyers to schedule your FREE Spartanburg, South Carolina, workers’ compensation claim. We will evaluate your claim and help you get started on pursuing workers’ compensation benefits to cover the cost of your treatment for your back injuries. If your claim has been wrongfully denied or if you encounter any resistance in recovering benefits, then you need a skilled and experienced workers’ compensation attorney on your side. Call Double Aught Injury Lawyers today to learn more.
Bryan Ramey is a Personal Injury Attorney who practices in the upstate of South Carolina. He graduated from The University of South Carolina School of Law, and has been practicing law for 27 years now. Bryan Ramey believes in representing the injured. Learn more about his experience by clicking here.