At our law firm, we represent people injured because of the negligent, reckless or aggressive actions of others. One kind of injury our clients often suffer is nerve or neurological damage, a potentially devastating, sometimes permanent injury that some sustain from motor vehicle accidents, dog bites, tripping or slipping and falling, birth injuries and other serious incidents.
Injury to the nervous system
As the Mayo Clinic explains, damage to nerves “can affect your brain’s ability to communicate with your muscles and organs.” The specific type of nerve damage, which may include pinching, compressing, overstretching, crushing, inflaming or severing injuries, varies with the nerve type affected: motor nerves, autonomic nerves or sensory nerves.
Nerve damage can cause a wide range of symptoms, including:
- Pain, including from damage to pain receptors
- Numbness or tingling
- Impairment of fine motor skills
- Difficulty discerning temperature
- Acute sensitivity to heat or cold
- Twitching or involuntary muscle movement
- Impaired reflexes
- Difficulty walking and with balance
- Blood pressure issues
- Digestive symptoms
- Visual or hearing problems
- Memory, concentration or cognition problems
- And many others
Of course, any serious physical injury can also result in emotional and mental health issues like anxiety, depression or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depending on the circumstances and prognosis.
Treatments and supports for neurological injury may include surgery; physical and occupational therapy; pharmaceutical interventions like steroids, anti-depressants, anti-convulsants, pain medications, topical and anti-inflammatory medications; medical equipment such as braces; electrical nerve stimulation; and others, including alternative treatments like massage or needling.
Cellular research may support nerve repair
Scientists at The Ohio State University and the University of Michigan recently discovered a new type of immune cell called a granulocyte with the potential to help treat nerve damage, including spinal cord injury. Because both mice and humans have granulocytes, scientists can study them in mice and extrapolate the results to what might happen in humans.
“I treat patients who have permanent neurological deficits, and they have to deal with debilitating symptoms every day. The possibility of reversing those deficits and improving the quality of life of individuals with neurological disorders is very exciting,” said one of the researchers, a neurology professor quoted in Courthouse News Service.
The researchers injected granulocytes into mice with damage to their optic nerves or to other nerves and new nerve fibers grew to replace the damaged ones. This is good news for people with spinal cord and other nerve injuries because currently, there is no effective therapy to repair or replace damaged nerves.
“Our findings could ultimately lead to the development of novel immunotherapies that reverse central nervous damage and restore lost neurological function across a spectrum of diseases,” said another researcher in the study.
We fight for money damages to cover all our clients’ losses resulting from nerve damage. One important component of comprehensive damages is adequate funding for future medical care especially considering the possibility of new medical treatments that could greatly improve their lives.