What is an Incomplete Spinal Injury in New Jersey?

Personal Injury • January 10, 2022

Spinal cord injuries may pose a number of problems for an individual. If you have been diagnosed with a spinal cord injury, it may have been classified as either ‘complete’ or ‘incomplete.’

An incomplete injury signifies that your spinal cord is still able to convey messages to or from the brain. It is also possible with an incomplete injury that you may retain some form of sensation and movement below the injury area.

A complete injury means that you have a total lack of motor and sensory function below the injury area. This could mean that you have no functioning axons or nerves at the injury site, or that there are no remaining axons or nerves, depending on your situation. This is a more severe type of spinal cord injury. Someone who has experienced this type of injury may experience paralysis in one or more limbs, or they may need mechanical assistance for breathing. Typically, the higher up on the spinal cord that an injury occurs, the more severe an individual’s symptoms may be.

Typically, your doctor will classify your injury based on the International Standards for the Neurological Classification of Spinal Cord Injuries impairment scale. Impairment is ranked as follows:

  • Class A: Loss of motor functions and sensation
  • Class B: Sensory impairment
  • Class C: Some sensory and motor function retained
  • Class D: Useful motor function preserved
  • Class E: Normal function

Common Types of Spinal Cord Injuries

You may be wondering what the most typical types of spinal cord injuries are. The type of injury typically dictates the part of your body that will be most affected.

One common spinal cord injury is a cervical injury. This causes either weakness or paralysis in arms and legs. Many regions of the body below the level of the injury can be affected by this type of injury.

Another common type of spinal cord injury is a lumbar level injury. This can result in weakness or paralysis of the legs. Parts of the upper body such as shoulders, hands, and arms are typically not affected by this injury.

One other type of spinal cord injury is a sacral injury, which can cause weakness or paralysis in the legs and hips. This can affect parts of the body such as the feet, legs, and genitals.

Common Causes of Incomplete Spinal Cord Injuries

The most prevalent cause of incomplete spinal cord injuries is vehicular incidents, including car accidents. After that, common causes include falls, violence, sports-related injuries, and medical or surgical issues.

If you have been involved in any of the above incidents, you may immediately begin to notice symptoms that could indicate you have an incomplete spinal cord injury. Some of the common symptoms can include a loss of control over limbs, difficulty breathing, numbness or weakness below the injury site, and unusual pain in the arms, legs, or back.

It is important to seek medical assistance right away if you begin experiencing any of these symptoms after an accident so you can receive a diagnosis and treatment. If your spinal injury is due to the fault of another party, you may also want to consider speaking with a Jersey City spinal cord injury attorney right away to see if you are eligible to file a civil claim and collect compensation to help with your injuries and healing.