Spinal cord injuries represent a small portion of the total injuries sustained in the United States. If you are one of those people suffering one, that is probably a cold comfort. SCIs risk lifelong paralysis. Even if you recover, it still requires weeks or months of time to do so.
It is important to understand the costs ahead of you. That way you have the tools to recover fair compensation for your injuries.
The more severe SCIs include motor function loss, paraplegia, low tetraplegia and high tetraplegia. Paraplegia refers to the partial or full paralysis of your lower half. Tetraplegia is the same but through your whole body.
According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, average yearly expenses vary depending on severity. The NSCISC breaks down these costs by first-year averages and subsequent year averages:
- Motor function loss: $375,196 for the first year and $45,572 in subsequent years
- Paraplegia: $560,287 for the first year and $74,221 in subsequent years
- Low tetraplegia: $830,708 for the first year and $122,468 in subsequent years
- High tetraplegia: $1.14 million for the first year and $199,638 in subsequent years
These costs include health care costs and living expenses but do not factor for indirect costs like loss of wages due to your inability to work.
SCIs usually result from a motor vehicle accident. But even if you sustained an SCI through medical malpractice or a fall on the job, there are ways to recover compensation for these costs. It is a long road to go down, but you do not have to find that financial support on your own.