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Spinal Cord Injury Accidents

Posted on in Car Accidents

IL injury lawyerSpinal cord injuries are arguably the worst injury that any can face. When such an injury arises from another person or party's negligent actions, the injured person deserves full compensation for their extensive damages. A skilled Rockford spinal cord injury attorney can help them achieve the best outcome possible. 

Spinal cord injuries (SCI) are rare, but when they do happen, they are invariably serious. Sadly, many of these injuries arise from incidents that were completely preventable. SCIs usually take a severe physical and emotional toll on victims and their families. Suppose you or someone you love was injured in an accident that caused a SCI. In that case, you need strong representation from a dedicated and compassionate Rockford spinal cord injury lawyer. You will find that lawyer at our firm.

What Causes Spinal Cord Injuries?

Accidents and gunshot wounds collectively account for approximately 83.1 percent of all SCIs since 2005. Motor vehicle crashes are by far the most common causes of SCI, causing nearly 32 percent. Falls represent just over 25 percent, while motorcycle accidents account for almost seven percent. Other causes are as follows:


IL injury lawyerCatastrophic injury claims are worth much more than other personal injury claims. If you suffered such an injury, it is imperative that you receive the compensation you deserve. Teaming with a knowledgeable Winnebago County catastrophic injury attorney can help you meet this goal.

All personal injuries are preventable and have negative financial implications. However, catastrophic injuries have lengthy and far-reaching consequences. As such, they are treated differently and require the careful attention of an experienced Winnebago County catastrophic injury lawyer.

What is a Catastrophic Injury?

What sets catastrophic injuries apart from other personal injuries is that they are much more devastating and expensive. If someone falls and breaks their ankle, of course, they will suffer pain, possibly require surgery, or physical therapy, and might be out of work for a few months. 


IL injury lawyerBurns injuries can arise from many different situations. When these situations were not the victim’s fault, they deserve compensation, partly to pay their medical bills. By working with an experienced Rockford burn injury attorney, they can seek the financial and physical recovery they deserve. Hundreds of thousands of Americans receive treatment for burn injuries each year. Burns are linked to 40,000 hospitalizations and 3,400 deaths annually. Burns can be caused by motor vehicle accidents, workplace accidents, defective products, premise liability, medical malpractice, and many other situations that require the attention of a knowledgeable Rockford burn injury lawyer.

Burn Injury Expenses

Not only are burns one of the most painful, traumatic, and disfiguring injuries anyone can face, but they are also one of the costliest. Treating burn injuries is incredibly high due to the rising expenses of hospitalizations, therapies, rehabilitation, reconstruction surgeries, skin grafts, and other healthcare options.

Consider the following statistics:


IL injury lawyerA catastrophic injury dramatically changes the life of a victim and those around them. The loss of an appendage, known as an amputation, certainly fits into the catastrophic injury category. People who suffer from an amputation may require help caring for themselves and might even need a new career or become unable to perform a job. If you had a limb amputated in or because of an accident, you have legal rights. An experienced Winnebago County amputation injury lawyer can help you protect and exercise them.  

Common Causes of Amputation Injuries

Nearly all types of incidences known for causing a severe injury can also be the potential cause of a catastrophic amputation injury. These include the following:

  • Motor vehicle collisions
  • Workplace accidents
  • Premises liability matters
  • Medical malpractice actions
  • Defective products

Sometimes, the injury itself will cause an amputation. These are known as traumatic amputations. Other times, the damage to a limb will be so severe that the only option is to amputate the limb. 


Winnebago County, ILA spinal cord injury can have a huge impact on a person's life. The severity of the injury depends on whether it is classified as complete or incomplete, as well as the part of the spine that was injured. Understanding these factors is crucial when looking at the long-term effects of a spinal cord injury. Those who have suffered these types of injuries because of the negligence of others can work with an attorney to determine their options for seeking compensation.

The Difference Between Complete and Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

It is important to understand how complete spinal cord injuries differ from incomplete spinal cord injuries. A complete spinal cord injury may result in a total loss of function below the level of the spine where the injury occurred. It will usually involve the spinal cord being cut or damaged severely. 

In contrast, an incomplete spinal cord injury may involve a partial loss of sensory or motor function. These cases may involve partial damage to the spinal cord due to broken vertebrae or herniated discs. The level of function a person may be able to maintain can depend on several factors, including the location and severity of the injury.


Winnebago County truck accident lawyersCommercial truck accidents can be devastating, and in many cases, they result in severe injuries and even fatalities. Due to the size and weight of 18-wheelers and other large trucks, collisions with smaller vehicles often result in life-changing injuries. Drivers and passengers in other vehicles are likely to suffer the most harm in a collision with a tractor-trailer truck, and they can work with a personal injury attorney to ensure that a negligent truck driver or trucking company will be held responsible. Some injuries that often occur in these types of accidents include:

1. Whiplash and Neck Injuries

In a truck accident, the sudden impact can cause the head to jerk forward, backward, or to the side forcefully. This places a great deal of strain on the neck muscles and ligaments, and it may also cause damage to the nerves in the neck and shoulders. Neck injuries can cause multiple types of ongoing symptoms, including pain, stiffness, headaches, dizziness, and reduced range of motion. Nerve damage may also result in numbness, tingling, or paralysis in the shoulders, arms, and hands.

2. Spinal Cord Injuries

The force of a truck accident can damage the bones in the spine and the nerves in the spinal cord. This can not only cause a great deal of pain and affect the range of motion in the back, but damage to the spinal cord may lead to partial or complete paralysis below the point of the injury. Spinal cord injuries may result in permanent disabilities, and the treatment a person may need to receive may include surgery, physical therapy, and rehabilitation.


Rockford Medical Malpractice AttorneysMedical malpractice occurs when a healthcare provider fails to provide the standard of care expected in their field, resulting in harm or injury to a patient. In some cases, medical malpractice can lead to the wrongful death of a patient, causing immense grief and emotional pain for their loved ones, as well as significant financial difficulties. If you believe that your loved one's death was caused by medical negligence, it is important to understand how you can seek justice for your loss.

Understanding Medical Malpractice

Medical professionals have an obligation to follow certain standards when providing healthcare services to patients. When they fail to meet these standards due to negligence, carelessness, lack of training, or errors, their actions may be considered medical malpractice. To establish a claim for wrongful death due to medical malpractice, certain elements must be proven:

  • The existence of a doctor-patient relationship

    It must be established that there was a professional relationship between the patient and the healthcare provider who caused their injury or death.


Winnebago County Nursing Home Malnutrition and Dehydration AttorneysNursing homes are meant to provide a safe and nurturing environment for elderly residents who require assistance with the activities of daily living and care and supervision from trained medical professionals. Unfortunately, instances of abuse and neglect in nursing homes are not uncommon, and in some cases, patients may experience malnutrition or dehydration. These conditions can have severe consequences on the health and well-being of elderly residents, leading to a decline in their overall quality of life. It is essential for nursing home patients and their families to be aware of the signs, causes, and legal ramifications associated with malnutrition and dehydration in nursing home facilities.

The Impact of Malnutrition

Malnutrition occurs when individuals do not receive adequate nutrients from their diet. In nursing homes, malnourishment often occurs due to improper meal planning, inadequate staffing levels, neglectful behavior by staff members, or underlying medical conditions that affect an individual's ability to eat or digest food correctly.

The effects of malnutrition on nursing home residents can be significant, and they may include:


Rockford Medication Error AttorneysMedication errors can have serious consequences for patients, ranging from mild discomfort to life-threatening situations. When these errors occur, it is important to determine who is responsible. In the state of Illinois, medical professionals can be held accountable for medication errors in certain circumstances. By understanding when medication errors can be addressed through medical malpractice claims, patients who have experienced these issues can make sure they will be able to address the harm they have suffered due to the negligence of medical professionals.

Incorrect Dosages

One common type of medication error is the administration of drugs at the wrong dosages. This can occur when a healthcare provider prescribes a drug at the wrong dose, a pharmacist dispenses the wrong amount of a drug, or a nurse administers a medication incorrectly. A dose that is too high may result in serious side effects or other health issues, while a dose that is too low may not adequately address a person’s medical issues. If a patient suffers harm as a result of receiving an incorrect dosage, the medical professional responsible may be held liable for the error.

Medical professionals have a duty of care to their patients, which includes prescribing and administering medications correctly. When a healthcare provider fails to meet this duty, and a patient is harmed as a result, they may be considered negligent. In cases of incorrect dosages, negligence can be established if it can be proven that the medical professional deviated from the standard of care expected in their field.


Winnebago County Burn Injury AttorneysSevere burn injuries can have a profound and multifaceted impact on victims, affecting them physically, emotionally, and financially. The consequences of such injuries extend far beyond the initial incident, often leaving lasting scars, both visible and invisible. People who have suffered burn injuries may have legal options, and if someone else was responsible for causing them harm, they can pursue compensation that will address the damages they have suffered. 

Effects of Serious Burn Injuries

There are different degrees of burn injuries. Less serious injuries such as first-degree burns may only affect the top layer of skin, while second- or third-degree burns may affect the lower layers of skin and other underlying tissues. The severity of a burn injury may also depend on the total area of the body that was affected. Burns that occur in major fires or due to exposure to toxic chemicals may cause extensive damage to multiple parts of the body.

Severe burns can affect victims in a variety of ways, including:


Rockford Joint Replacement Surgical Error AttorneysJoint replacement surgeries have become increasingly common in recent years, providing relief for individuals who experience chronic pain and limited mobility. While these procedures can be very beneficial, there is a risk of errors occurring during surgery that can have significant consequences for the patient. Understanding how surgical errors can affect patients and the steps that can be taken to address these issues can be crucial, and an attorney can help determine the best course of action to take in these situations. 

Types of Errors During Joint Replacement Surgeries

Mistakes during joint replacement surgeries can occur due to various factors, including surgical negligence, lack of experience, or equipment failure. Some common types of errors include:

  • Implant misalignment or incorrect sizing


Winnebago County Amputation Injury AttorneyAmputation injuries can be devastating and life-changing. These catastrophic injuries can occur in various circumstances, including car accidents, workplace accidents, and other types of personal injury cases. Losing a limb can result in significant physical, emotional, and financial challenges for the victim and their family. Fortunately, victims of amputation injuries may be entitled to compensation to help them cope with the aftermath of such a life-altering event.

Medical Expenses

The medical costs associated with amputation injuries can be substantial. These may include emergency medical care, hospitalization, and surgeries, as well as rehabilitation, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and other ongoing treatments. Compensation for medical expenses aims to cover the costs of past, current, and future medical care resulting from an amputation injury.

Home Modifications and Assistive Technology

Following an amputation, a victim may require prosthetics or other adaptive equipment that will allow them to regain independence and improve their quality of life. Modifications may need to be made to a person’s home to accommodate their new mobility needs. This could include installing ramps, widening doorways, or making other structural changes to ensure accessibility and ease of movement. Additionally, an amputee may require assistive technology such as specialized computer software or communication devices. A person may receive compensation to cover the costs associated with the necessary equipment and the therapy needed to ensure that they can use devices correctly as they address their daily needs.


IL injury lawyerMedical malpractice is commonly thought of as something doctors are sued for when they make a serious mistake that harms a patient. However, medical doctors are not the only people or parties who can be sued for medical malpractice. In Illinois, almost any licensed healthcare provider can be held liable for causing harm to a patient through medical malpractice litigation. When you seek healthcare, there are likely to be a lot of professionals other than just a physician involved in treating you. A nurse or nurse practitioner or physician’s assistant may be involved in your care.

It is also important to know that health care for the purpose of medical malpractice litigation entails more than strictly medical care for physical health conditions. Mental health providers and dental care providers are also important members of the healthcare profession. If you believe that you have been harmed because any type of licensed healthcare provider made a mistake, it is important to speak with a qualified attorney as soon as possible. The statute of limitations for medical malpractice is quite strict.

Healthcare Providers Who Can Be Subject to a Medical Malpractice Suit

Most people you go to see for medical, mental health, or dental care can be sued for medical malpractice if they make a careless mistake and cause you harm. Types of licensed healthcare professionals you may be able to sue for malpractice include:


Rockford, IL delayed diagnosis attorneyPatients expect that when they receive treatment from a healthcare provider, the proper steps will be followed to diagnose their condition and create an appropriate treatment plan. Unfortunately, patients do not always receive the proper level of care. A doctor may not fully consider a patient's symptoms, their medical history, or other factors, and they may not diagnose a serious medical condition correctly. When a doctor fails to diagnose a condition in a timely manner, the patient could suffer harm. Delayed diagnosis can lead to worsening health consequences, further pain, disabilities, or even wrongful death. In these situations, it is important for patients to understand the steps they can take if they believe they have been a victim of medical malpractice.

Consequences of a Delayed Diagnosis

There are numerous ways that a failure to diagnose a condition correctly can cause patients to suffer injuries or other forms of harm, including:

  • When the diagnosis affects the treatment plan - A delay in diagnosis is likely to result in a delay in treatment for the patient. The longer a patient goes without a proper diagnosis, the more likely it is that their condition will worsen. For example, if a patient is not diagnosed with cancer until after it has reached an advanced stage, their treatment options might be more limited, and their condition could even become terminal.


b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1144538219-2.jpgThe loss of a loved one can be a difficult situation to deal with, whether the person lived a full life and passed away at an advanced age or died unexpectedly. However, when a person is killed because of someone else's negligence or wrongful conduct, family members may struggle to address their loss and move forward with their lives. These situations can be especially difficult if the untimely loss of a loved one led to financial problems due to the loss of income the person would have earned, large medical bills for treatment they received prior to their death, or other factors.

Fortunately, Illinois law allows surviving family members to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the party or parties who were responsible for a person's death. This type of lawsuit can help bring some sense of justice and provide compensation for the losses a family has suffered. In these situations, it is essential to understand the types of damages that family members may be able to recover. By working with an experienced attorney, survivors can take steps to ensure that they receive adequate compensation for their losses. The damages that family members may be able to receive include:

Economic Damages

Survivors may receive compensation for the financial losses they have suffered due to their loved one's wrongful death. These damages may help offset some of the costs resulting from the loss. They may include the loss of income and financial support that the deceased person would have provided for their family, the loss of benefits or inheritances, and expenses related to a person's burial or funeral. A jury may consider the deceased person's income, age, occupation, and life expectancy when awarding economic damages.


rockford medical malpractice lawyerThe spinal cord transmits signals from the brain to the body and from the body to the brain. Everything from movement to our ability to sense pain is controlled by the spinal cord. Consequently, any damage to the spinal cord can have catastrophic consequences and errors during surgery on the spinal cord can leave a person permanently disabled

If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal cord injury as a result of medical negligence, you may have the right to seek compensation for your medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages.

Examples of Spinal Cord Injuries Caused by Surgical Errors

Surgical mistakes that lead to spinal cord injury can take many forms. Common causes of these injuries include:


rockford medical malpractice lawyerThe smallest things can lead to patient harm. A small mistake on a prescription pad or a decimal point in the wrong place could cause a medication error. A single distracted thought as a nurse is recording information into a patient chart could lead to vital information being left off of a physician’s radar. A single tiny splotch of abnormal tissue misread on an image could lead to a misdiagnosis. It, therefore, is not so difficult to imagine that a physician’s body language could contribute to a medical mistake – or could prevent one from happening – either.

Helping Versus Harming

When a patient has suffered serious harm due to a healthcare provider’s failure to provide them with the standard of care expected by the medical profession, the patient may have a valid medical malpractice claim. Yet, partially because providers are not known for being forthcoming after they have wronged patients and partially because medical conditions tend to have complex origins, medical malpractice is often very difficult to prove.

A physician’s body language can help to facilitate patient safety or it can potentially compromise it. When a doctor is fidgeting, staring at anything but the patient when they are speaking, and otherwise indicating that they are not fully present when a patient is being treated, that physical inattention to the moment can serve as a red flag that they are less likely to provide their patient with proper care. On the other hand, a physician whose body language indicates that they are fully present in the moment can inspire fruitful communication that could help to prevent missteps.


b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1940771200-1-min.jpgIn May of 2022, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Inspector General published a report regarding the rate at which Medicare patients experience harm while hospitalized. Although not every type of hospitalized patient harm is legally actionable, a significant fraction of such cases occur due to unacceptable manifestations of medical malpractice.

What Does the Report Say?

Widespread statistics indicate that more than 95 percent of older Americans are covered by Medicare. According to the HHS report, one out of every four of those individuals experienced harm if they were hospitalized in 2018. There is no evidence to suggest that the reality of this situation has improved since that time.

In 2018, 12 percent of hospitalized Medicare patients experienced harmful adverse events that were so significant that they necessitated longer hospitalizations and/or life-saving interventions, while others led to permanent harm or death. Additionally, 13 percent of Medicare patients were subjected to so-called “temporary harm events” which were serious in nature but did not meet the criteria noted above. Catalysts for both serious and temporary harm events included acquired infections, side effects from medication, treatment-related complications, and vaguely classified “patient care issues.”


winnebago county medical malpractice lawyerOne of the reasons that medical malpractice cases are so challenging to pursue is that the standard of negligence that plaintiffs must prove is far more context-specific than it is for most other personal injury scenarios. If someone is harmed on another’s property, for example, a plaintiff must prove that the owner of the property either knew or should have known about a hazardous condition and did not take steps to mitigate the risk of harm it could cause. In a medication error case. However, a plaintiff must prove that the defendant violated the medical standard of care.

Parsing what the medical standard of care should look like under every injured patient’s unique circumstances can be truly challenging. This is why it is helpful to understand when providers are being provided with clear-cut guidance that spells out what a professional’s standard of care needs to be. That understanding can help to inform an injured patient’s legal strategy as they attempt to prove that their harm was both preventable and caused by professional malpractice.

AAMC Guidance

In the event that a physician becomes aware that a medication error has occurred, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) advises physicians to disclose the occurrence of the error, a complete explanation of the circumstances in question, and an evaluation of potential and realized negative consequences stemming from that harm. The AAMC also advises timely formal reporting of medication errors, which helps to ensure transparency beyond a patient’s individual knowledge.


b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_1029252745-min.jpgWhile physicians and nurses are healers, they do not possess a superhuman ability to mitigate, let alone cure, all medical conditions. Nor are they empowered to prevent every type of harm that a patient could conceivably suffer. As a result of this reality, identifying what kinds of patient harm are – and are not – evidence of medical malpractice can be extremely difficult. After all, not every interaction with a patient ends in a favorable outcome and that is certainly not always the fault of healthcare providers.

With that said, more than enough unfavorable patient outcomes that do occur are caused by substandard care on the part of healthcare providers. As a result, it is important for those who are suffering in ways that may have been prevented to thoroughly investigate their circumstances. In the event that the harm in question was caused by an actionable mistake or another negligent approach to patient care, the affected living patient or a deceased patient’s surviving loved ones may have grounds upon which to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.

Signs that Your Harm May Be Actionable

Unless you or a loved one witness a healthcare provider make a mistake or a provider admits to making a mistake, there are few surefire ways to identify when a healthcare situation resulting in harm may be actionable. With that said, some warning signs of medical negligence should prompt you to speak with an attorney about whether you or a loved one may have suffered due to medical malpractice. These are a few of the most common:

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