A lot of people don’t take slip and fall injuries very seriously, but they are incredibly common and often have devastating results.
Case-in-point: they are a leading cause of emergency room visits in Florida.
Now, this doesn’t mean that every single fall someone experiences leads to a severe injury. Exactly what harm results from an individual fall depends upon the force and distance of the fall, the surface that the victim falls on, and how the victim lands. Some of the most common injuries, however, involve the back, spinal cord, hip, and head.
Below, we’re going to go over several common – and serious – injuries that can result from a slip and fall.
Back injuries are some of the most common slip and fall injuries, and can leave victims debilitated for long periods of time – and potentially permanently. Compression fractures of the spinal vertebra may occur, especially in persons over 50 who suffer from osteoporosis or other conditions that weaken the bones. Slips and falls can also lead to a slipped or herniated disc, which can be painful and debilitating if left untreated.
Additionally, injuries to the back can lead to severe chronic pain, and may even make victims unable to work, resulting in lost wages. Seeking treatment and rehabilitation as soon as possible after a back injury can minimize lasting impacts.
Spinal cord injuries
The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that runs down the middle of the back. Injury to the spinal cord disrupts communication between the body and brain, and in the worst cases can even leave victims partially or fully paralyzed below the point of the injury.
Spinal cord injuries originating from slips and falls are typically caused by fractured vertebra that damage the spinal cord tissue or compress nerves, preventing the transmission of neural signals.
Injuries to the spinal cord are some of the most serious slip and fall injuries, as victims can be left permanently disabled. This can compromise quality of life, and results in high medical bills and lost wages, meaning that victims are unable to provide for their families.
Of all fractures that can result from slips and falls, hip fractures lead to the greatest number of lasting health problems and deaths. Hip fractures may be more common in elderly victims with osteoporosis or other diseases that compromise bone strength. These types of injuries almost invariably require costly surgery to repair the break and potentially replace the hip.
Traumatic brain injuries
Did you know that falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injuries, especially in young children and persons over 65? Approximately 2.5 million people suffer from traumatic brain injuries annually, and over 50,000 die from these injuries.
Thankfully, most traumatic brain injuries are mild and do not result in lasting damage, though any head injury should be considered a medical emergency, as imaging is necessary to rule out hemorrhaging on the brain. A severe traumatic brain injury can lead to loss of motor skills, cognitive impairment, memory loss or even death. Moreover, costly medical bills are likely, particularly if the patient is uninsured.
Hold Responsible Parties Accountable for Slip and Falls That Occur Due to Negligence
Here’s the good news: slip and fall injuries are often preventable. They tend to occur due to unsafe conditions.
This means that if you have suffered a slip and fall injury on someone else’s property, you may be able to seek damages to cover your medical bills, lost wages and other expenses. A personal injury attorney can determine whether filing suit may be appropriate, and help you get the compensation you deserve.
About the Author:
Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.