Spinal fractures in Florida are typically caused by high velocity accidents such as car crashes or long falls, and they are very serious injuries. They can pinch, compress, and even tear the spinal cord. Treatment of spinal fractures depends on the type of fracture and the degree of instability. The most common occur in the mid-back (thoracic spine) and lower back (lumbar spine). They can also occur at the connection of the two, known as the thoracolumbar junction.
Generally speaking, men are four times more likely to suffer from a thoracic or lumbar spine fracture. Because of osteoporosis and weakened bones, senior citizens are also at a high risk for spinal fractures.
Signs & Symptoms of Spinal Fractures
Vertebral fractures of the thoracic and lumbar spine are usually associated with major trauma and can cause spinal cord damage that result in neural deficits. Symptoms of Spinal fracture can include pain or the development of neural deficits such as the following:
- Neurogenic Shock
- Spinal Shock: Temporary loss of spinal reflex activity
Not only can Spinal fractures occur at different parts of the spine, as mentioned above, but there are also several types of Spinal Fractures. Spinal fractures are based on the pattern of injury as well as whether the spinal cord itself has been injured. Classifying the type of Spinal Fractures helps medical providers determine the appropriate treatment. The three most common types of Spine fractures are 1) Flexion 2) Rotation, and 3)Extension.
- Compression Fractures occur when the front of the vertebra breaks and loses height while the back portion does not. These fractures are usually stable and rarely are associated with neurological problems
- Axial Burst Fractures occur when both sides of the vertebra lose height, and these are often caused by falling from a height and landing on the feet.
- Transverse process fractures are uncommon, but they result from rotation or extreme lateral bending. Usually these do not affect stability.
- Fracture dislocations are unstable injuries that involve both bone and soft tissue. With fracture dislocations, the vertebra could become displaced, and serious spinal cord compression often results.
- Flexion/distraction fractures occur when the vertebra is pulled apart. These normally occur after head on car collisions in which the upper body is thrown forward while the pelvis is stabilized by a seat belt.
Complications Associated With Spinal Fractures
Several complications can be associated with fractures of both the thoracic and lumbar spine. For example, potentially fatal blood clots may develop and cause immobility. Such clots could travel to the lungs and cause death by pulmonary embolism. Other common complications of spinal fractures include pneumonia and pressure sores. Specific surgical complications include: bleeding, infection, and spinal fluid leaks, instrument failure, and nonunion. Such complications can be reduced by mechanical methods such as leg compression stockings. There are also medications available to protect against clots.
Spinal Fracture Attorneys in Clearwater, Florida
Such devastating injuries frequently take place after vehicular collisions. Promptly identifying injuries and getting the appropriate treatment by a qualified expert medical professional is crucial to your health. At Dolman Law Group, our attorneys have years of experience handling claims that involve spinal injuries. We also have close knit bonds with highly qualified medical professionals all over the Tampa Bay/Clearwater area. If you have been injured in a collision, give the attorneys at Dolman Law Group a call today for a no obligation, no cost consultation: 727-451-6900.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765