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Albany Back Injury Lawyer
If you suffer a back injury in a car accident or a slip and fall accident, you could be looking at a long life of chronic back pain and doctor’s office visits. The good news is that you can potentially recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages from the negligent party. An Albany back injury lawyer at Bailey, Johnson & Peck has the skill and experience necessary to take on your back injury case, no matter the severity of the accident or injury. Call 518-456-0082 to schedule a free consultation with one of our back injury lawyers today.
What is a Back Injury?
A back injury describes any damage to the vertebrae, joints, nerves, muscles, and connective tissues in the back. Back injury claims can range from mild to severe.
For example, a soft tissue injury in the back (damage to the back muscles, ligaments, tendons) is generally considered minor. While soft tissue injuries are incredibly painful and do require medical treatment, they are generally temporary and don’t cause permanent disability. Meanwhile, a severe injury to the back would include a spine injury and/or permanent nerve damage. These back injury cases often involve months or years of pain, suffering, and disability.
Common Causes of Back Injuries
Most back and spinal injuries occur due to the serious accidents listed below:
- Motor vehicle accidents such as car accidents, truck accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, and motorcycle accidents.
- Slip and fall accidents
- Medical malpractice incidents such as epidural errors, birth injuries, or chiropractic adjustment errors
- Construction accidents (and other work-related accidents)
- Sports and exercise-related accidents such as improper lifting
- Physical violence such as aggravated assault, domestic violence, shootings, etc.
If your back injury occurred due to someone else’s negligence, Albany personal injury attorneys at Bailey, Johnson & Peck may be able to help.
Common Types of Back Injuries
Back injuries can be incredibly complex due to the sheer number of body parts that create it. There are 33 back bones (vertebrae), 23 vertebral discs, 40 muscles, and 31 pairs of spinal nerves and roots. Not to mention, we all have a spinal cord which helps us perform almost every single bodily function and movement. So there is a lot that can go wrong here. Back injuries can occur due to damage to one or more of these body parts. Below, we list the most common types of back injuries that people can suffer from car accidents, slip and fall accidents, medical malpractice incidents, you name it.
According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC), approximately 17,7000 Americans suffer from spinal cord injuries every year. 250,000 to 363,000 of these Americans are actively living with a spinal injury.
The spinal cord is encased by the spinal column for the sake of protection. The 31 pairs of spinal nerve roots branch out from the spinal cord and through the rest of the body so that we can move, think, feel, and function. Major damage to the spinal cord and brain – AKA the central nervous system – is often catastrophic. A spinal cord injury can easily result in partial or complete paralysis, chronic pain, and nerve dysfunction. The most severe cases of spinal cord injuries result in wrongful death.
Car accidents and slip and fall accidents are the top causes of spinal cord injuries in the U.S. Accidents like these are generally caused by negligence. So if a drunk driver or a broken staircase caused your spinal injury, you have grounds to file a spinal cord injury lawsuit. Albany back injury lawyers at Bailey, Johnson & Peck can handle your legal affairs while you focus on healing from your injury.
Soft tissue back injuries – such as sprains and strains – are probably the most common types of back injuries that people suffer from. Sprains and strains describe stretched or torn muscles and ligaments. These types of back injuries can occur from intense twisting, bending, lifting, pulling, and stretching. Soft tissue back injuries are also commonly caused by the strain of being overweight.
While soft tissue injuries are painful, they are often temporary and can often be resolved with home remedies. Over the counter pain medications, rest, hot/cold therapy, and gentle stretching can gradually heal a soft tissue back injury over the course of a few weeks.
Between each vertebra in the spinal column is a rubbery disc. These discs absorb shock from our day to day movements. Car accidents, slip and fall accidents, aging, chiropractic adjustment errors, and vigorous movements can cause a herniated disc, which is when part of the disc is pushed out into the spinal canal.
Herniated discs often cause a condition called radiculopathy, which is when a spinal nerve root becomes pinched. Pinched nerves can cause numbness, tingling, and pain throughout the body. The type and location of the numbness and tingling pain depends on the location of the pinched nerve.
- Cervical Radiculopathy means that you have a pinched nerve in the cervical spine (the neck).
- Thoracic Radiculopathy means that you have a pinched nerve in the thoracic spine (the mid back).
- Lumbar Radiculopathy means that you have a pinched nerve in the lumbar spine (the lower back).
Both herniated discs and radiculopathy can be incredibly painful. However, both conditions are very manageable with pain medications, steroids, home care, and even surgery. While these conditions typically don’t result in full blown disability, it can happen, especially if there are multiple herniated discs and pinched nerves.
A fractured vertebra is basically a broken back bone. There are two main types of fractured vertebrae, and they are compression fractures and burst fractures. Compression fractures occur when the back bones get violently pushed together and then collapse upon themselves. Meanwhile, burst fractures occur when vertebra pieces explode out into the spinal cord and spinal nerves.
Spine injuries like this are typically caused by traumatic accidents like car accidents, slip and fall accidents, sports accidents, and acts of violence. One or more fractured back bones probably rank second place in most severe spinal injuries, with spinal cord injuries being number one. Still, it’s very possible to fully recover from one or more fractured vertebrae, while many spinal cord injury victims endure lifelong disability.
Can You Sue for a Back Injury?
Yes, you can certainly sue for a back injury, especially if someone’s negligence directly caused your injury. Also, if your back injury resulted in thousands of dollars in damages like medical expenses and lost wages, you may have grounds to sue the negligent party. An Albany back injury lawyer can help accident victims who have suffered back pain and injuries from:
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Slip and fall accidents
- Medical malpractice incidents
- Birth injuries
- Work-related accidents and construction accidents
A personal injury attorney at Bailey, Johnson & Peck can carefully analyze the details of your accident and help you seek compensation through a back injury lawsuit or through the negligent party’s insurance company.
Can You Sue if an Accident Aggravated a Pre Existing Back Injury?
Yes, although personal injury cases like these can be complicated. Causation is generally the most complicated part of personal injury cases involving pre-existing injuries.
In a normal back injury case, all you have to do is prove that the negligent party’s actions or inactions directly caused the injury. This can easily be proven through medical records. But for a re-aggravated back injury case, the plaintiff would somehow have to prove that the pre-existing back injury got worse during a motor vehicle accident, for example. Depending on the type of back injury, proving that the injury got worse or reaggravated can be very difficult or even impossible. But an experienced back injury lawyer at Bailey, Johnson & Peck can find a way to successfully prove the causation element in a case like this.
Damages for a Back Injury
An Albany back injury lawyer can help you recover financial compensation for the following types of damages:
- Past and future medical bills
- Past and future physical therapy bills
- Expenses for necessary medical equipment such as wheelchairs, breathing machines, etc. (if the injury sustained was a spinal cord injury)
- Caretaking expenses
- Physical pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Mental health counseling costs
- Loss of consortium
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Loss of enjoyment of daily life
- Funeral and burial expenses if the spinal injury resulted in wrongful death
What is the Average Back Injury Settlement Amount?
The average settlement value for a back injury can be anywhere from $10,000 to upwards of $200,000 depending on the severity of the back injury and the accident.
For example, let’s say a texting driver causes a car accident and the victim suffers one or more herniated discs and pinched nerves. Both of these conditions can lead to significant pain and countless trips to the doctor. However, the conditions are not life threatening and typically don’t lead to full disability. So the average settlement amount for a back injury like this will likely be on the lower end, but still enough to cover the victim’s damages.
Now let’s say that a texting driver causes a car accident and the victim suffers a major spinal cord injury which paralyzes them from the neck down. This is the worst case scenario for back injuries. The victim will never be able to move, work, or even use the bathroom without help again. They will likely struggle to enjoy their life at all because they will be fully disabled. The average settlement amount for a spinal cord injury lawsuit like this will probably be closer to millions of dollars.
Albany back injury lawyers can analyze the details of your case and help you calculate your average back injury settlement. Before you speak with an insurance company or anyone else, you need to seek experienced legal counsel from our law firm.
Call an Albany Back Injury Lawyer at Bailey, Johnson & Peck TodayIf you have suffered a back injury from someone else’s negligence, you need to seek strong legal representation. Back injuries are complex and can certainly change the way you move, work, and enjoy your life. Our Albany personal injury lawyers can help victims recover a fair back injury settlement from insurance companies or through personal injury lawsuits. Call 518-456-0082 to schedule a free consultation with our legal team today.
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Our attorneys have extensive experience in personal injury law, including car accidents, slip-and-fall accidents, catastrophic injuries and wrongful death. If you have questions about insurance coverage and how to get the financial compensation you need, contact us today to see how we can help.
We have represented many clients on both sides of personal injury and insurance disputes. Let us use our depth of knowledge and experience to help you and your family get the medical care and financial compensation you need and deserve.