Law Offices of Tom Plouff
tom plouff phone 312-637-9141

Chicago Spinal Cord Injury Attorney

I practice extensively in Chicago on behalf of persons who have suffered spinal cord injury resulting in paraplegia or quadripelgia/ tetraplegia from autombile accidents, medical malpractice, falls and other serious and catastrophic injuries due to the negligence of others.

Spinal cord injury is defined as damage or trauma to the spinal cord that in turn results in a loss or impaired function resulting in reduced mobility or feeling. Spinal cord injury is a leading cause of disability in the United States

Common causes of damage to the spinal cord, are trauma (for example, car/motorcycle/truck accidents, violent related accidents, falls, sports injuries, etc), or disease (for example, Transverse Myelitis, Cauda Equina, locked in syndrome).

When an injury to the spine occurs, whether at the neck (cervical) or back (lumbar) area, there is a loss of motor function and the ability to do the things we take for granted, like walking, bathing and dressing and working.

The resulting damage to the spinal cord is known as a lesion, and the paralysis is known as Quadriplegia or Quadraplegia / Tetraplegia if the injury is in the area of the neck or as Paraplegia if the injury is in the Thoracic, Lumbar or Sacral region.

Loss of sensation, motor function, bowel and bladder control can be temporary or permanent. The injury can be incomplete, that is the ability to do some activities related to the level of injury can be present or complete in which all function is lost below the level of injury.

It is possible for someone to suffer a Broken Neck,or a Broken Back without becoming paralysed. This occurs when there is a fracture or dislocation of the vertebrae, but the spinal cord has not been damaged.

If the serious or catastrophic injury is to the lower spine injury (lumbar) one usually loses the ability to walk independently and will have bowel and bladder dysfunction. Those with neck
(cervical) injuries will lose the ability to use their arms and legs. A high neck injury (above C4) can result in permanent use of a ventilator for breathing support.

Recovering from a spinal cord injury requires long rehabilitation and can be physically and financially draining. Although some will fully recover, many will need long-term medical and rehabilitative care. Home modifications are necessary and work may or may not be available for you.

A jury will ordinarily have sympathy for the person who suffers a serious and catastrophic injury like a spinal cord injury. The judge will tell the jurors, however, not to take sympathy into consideration in arriving at a verdict. A trial lawyer argues, as I have, that empathy is much different from sympathy. It involves an understanding of what has happened to the person, how the person has undergone pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life, all of which the jury will be told it can properly consider in arriving at a verdict.

In order to obtain a full recovery for a person who has suffered a spinal cord injury due to the negligence of others, a trial lawyer must educate the jury on the cost of future care, which
typically runs into tens of millions of dollars. The defense will frequently argue that the cost of future care is a fraction of that because family will provide the care. A trial lawyer needs to
retain a life care planner to come up with a life care plan for future care. Not only should the family not be overly burdened but there is no telling how long family will be around for should the spinal cord injured patient survive them. Once you convince the jury that the defendant acted negligently, then the person with the spinal cord injury should receive the best of reasonable care as everything possible should be done to provide for a life free from worry about how to pay for the right care.

I understand the complexities needed in assisting you with your case. I want you to get in as good of health as you can. As your trial attorney I will fight for you to obtain the most money
that you can get as I understand that is critical to you becoming the best that you can be now that you have suffered this this life changing injury.

If you have a spinal cord injury and need an attorney for a case in the Chicago area, please call me now at (312) 637-9141 or contact me now.