Whether because of a car accident on the highway or a bad spill off an ATV, spinal cord injuries incur immediate, long-term and unseen costs alike. No one expects to suffer paralysis, but knowing what comes after may help in the aftermath.
According to the National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center, the average costs of your SCI vary, depending on the severity.
Depending on the damage to your spine, you may experience anything from minor motor function loss to full-body paralysis. In the first year, where surgery and rehabilitation are at the forefront of most people’s minds when recovering from an SCI, costs are the highest.
Losing motor function costs, on average, around $375,196 in the first year. Paraplegia, or the paralysis of your lower half, costs around $560,287. Tetraplegia, meaning the partial or full paralysis of your body, ranges between $830,708 and $1.149 million.
Since medical science has no cure for an SCI, you may find yourself paralyzed for the rest of your life. This cost adds up over subsequent years and, depending on the severity, ranges between $45,572 and $199,637.
All of these numbers take into account medical debt and the cost of recovery, but they do not include losses such as your career. You may lack the capability to work at your previous job. Or, if you go back to work, you may find yourself unable to do as much. This loss in wages and productivity likewise impacts your life.
Your SCI and its costs are unique to you and your case. When seeking fair compensation for your injury, it is important to understand all the types of costs ahead of you.