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Spinal cord trauma and its ramifications

Many Pennsylvania residents have been in accidents that have caused injuries to their spinal cord. A February 2015 report estimated that the annual incidence of these injuries, excluding those that immediately proved fatal, is approximately 40 per 1 million U.S. residents. Those who have received such an injury, as well as their family members, may be interested in learning more about some statistics relating to such traumas.

There are about 12,500 incidences of trauma to the spinal cord in America every year. The average age of a victim at the time of the injury is 42 years, and approximately 80 percent of victims are male. Statistics show that about 23 percent of those who receive spinal trauma are black, which is substantially more than the 12 percent of the general population who are black.

The main cause of spinal cord trauma is motor vehicle accidents. Falls, sports, gunshot wounds and other acts of violence are also major sources of these injuries.

In the event that a spinal cord injury has been caused by the negligence of another, it can be important to determine the exact extent of the damage to the spine, the amount of time that it will take to heal and the amount of temporary or permanent disability that will result. A personal injury attorney representing the victim can use this and other information, such as the medical expenses that have already been incurred and the wages that have been and will be lost, in order to calculate the damages that should be sought in a civil lawsuit filed against the responsible party.

Source: National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, "Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Facts and Figures at a Glance", NSCISC, February 2015

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