Acts of Negligence and Paralysis

Acts of Negligence and ParalysisParalysis ranks among the most traumatic injuries, altering lives physically, mentally, and financially. The ramifications of paralysis can be profound, affecting one’s ability to engage in daily activities, work, or even interact with loved ones. Shockingly, a single careless or reckless act can inflict paralysis on an individual, reverberant through their existence for years to come.

How do negligent acts cause paralysis?

Most of the time, paralysis occurs due to a person’s negligent actions. For example, a driver may be looking at their phone and slam into the back of a bicyclist, causing them to be thrown off their bike and become paralyzed. Another example is if a worker fails to mop up a large spill in a grocery store aisle and a shopper slips and falls on it, they may experience damage to their spinal cord injury, resulting in paralysis.

Paralysis can emerge after any type of personal injury accident, such as a car crash, motorcycle accident, truck crash, slip and fall accident, construction accident, bicycle crash, pedestrian accident, sport-related incident, and more. Many times, paralysis occurs because the spinal cord is damaged, causing communication issues between the brain and the nerves below the injury. However, other types of injuries can also cause paralysis, such as back injuries, neck injuries, nerve injuries, brain injuries, and muscle injuries.

The different types of paralysis that may occur from negligence

Paralysis manifests in various forms, each with its own implications for mobility and function. From temporary paralysis, where recovery is anticipated, to complete paralysis, where limb movement is lost entirely, the spectrum of paralysis encompasses:

  1. Temporary paralysis: Temporary paralysis means that you may currently be paralyzed, but you are expected to regain movement and function in the paralyzed limb again. For example, if you were in a car accident that caused your leg to become temporarily paralyzed, you should regain feeling and movement in your leg in the future with proper rest, physical therapy exercises, and possibly even surgery.
  2. Partial paralysis: Partial paralysis is when you still have some feeling, control, or function in the affected limb or muscle. A person who has partial paralysis may have trouble using their arm or leg, or their paralysis may come and go.
  3. Complete paralysis: Complete paralysis means that you cannot move or use your paralyzed limbs or muscles at all. You may also not have any feeling in the affected limb or muscle.
  4. Monoplegia: Monoplegia is when only one limb is paralyzed. For example, if only one of your arms or one of your legs are paralyzed, you have monoplegia.
  5. Diplegia: Diplegia is when you have paralysis in the same limbs on both sides. For example, if both of your legs or both of your arms are paralyzed, you may be diagnosed with diplegia.
  6. Paraplegia: Paraplegia is when you have paralysis below the waist. This means that you cannot feel or move anything below your stomach area.
  7. Hemiplegia: Hemiplegia is when only one side of your body is paralyzed. For example, your leg and arm on the same side may be paralyzed with hemiplegia.
  8. Quadriplegia: Quadriplegia is the most severe form of paralysis. When you are diagnosed with quadriplegia, it means that all four of your limbs (legs and arms) and the rest of your body from the neck down are paralyzed. Sometimes, even your organs can become paralyzed with quadriplegia.

Symptoms of paralysis

There are a variety of different symptoms of paralysis that you should keep an eye out for, including:

  • Tingling or numbness
  • Inability to move a certain limb or part of the body
  • Weakness or cramping in the muscles
  • Stiffness
  • Difficulties breathing, drinking, swallowing, or eating
  • Muscle twitches or spasms
  • Chronic or recurring pain

Examples of negligent behaviors that can lead to paralysis

When someone acts negligently, they may cause an accident, which can lead to paralysis. The following are several examples of negligent behavior that can cause paralysis:

  • Drunk driving
  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding
  • Failure to yield
  • Improper lane changes
  • Aggressive driving or road rage
  • Tailgating
  • Running a red light or stop sign
  • Driving in the bike lane
  • Using unsafe tools or equipment
  • Operating defective machinery
  • Failing to secure objects and products
  • Trying to cut corners to get the job done quicker
  • Failing to pay attention to surroundings
  • Failing to provide adequate lighting
  • Failing to ensure that products and objects are out of other’s pathway
  • Leaving spilled liquids on the floor
  • Failing to fix or warn others about broken or cracked flooring

As you can see, there are many types of negligent behaviors that can cause paralysis. However, where your injury is located will determine what type of paralysis you may have. For instance, lower back injuries typically cause paraplegia, and higher back or neck injuries typically cause quadriplegia. Nerve injuries may cause monoplegia, while brain injuries may cause hemiplegia. Therefore, it is critical to know what type of injury you have, where it is located, and how severe it is. This information will help you and your doctor gain some insight into what type of paralysis you may have and the expected prognosis.

Do you or a loved one suffer paralysis as a result of another person’s negligence? If so, the Nashville paralysis injury attorneys at Rocky McElhaney are here to help. Our team has represented paralysis victims and their families for many years. Therefore, when you work with us, you can rest assured, knowing that we have what it takes to investigate your accident, determine liability for your injury, and fight for the compensation you need and deserve to pay for your overwhelming costs and adapt to your new reality. Please call our office or submit our contact form to schedule a free and confidential consultation at one of our offices in Nashville, East Nashville, Hendersonville, Clarksville, and Murfreesboro today.