If you become the victim of a Texas car crash in which you injure your back, the unfortunate answer to the title question is “yes, a car crash can paralyze you.” Where the paralysis occurs depends on which part of your spine becomes injured.
As UPMC Enterprises explains, your spinal cord contains the following four sections:
- Your cervical region that goes from the base of your brain to the lower portion of your neck
- Your thoracic region that goes from the bottom of your neck to your waist
- Your lumbar region that goes from your waist to your lower back
- Your sacral region that goes from your lower back to your tailbone
The nerves emanating from these spinal cord regions control your ability to move the various parts of your body and to feel sensation in them. The higher up your spinal cord becomes severed, the more of your body you will lose movement, sensation and functionality in.
Paraplegia versus quadriplegia
Medically, the two types of paralysis you can suffer are paraplegia and quadriplegia. As their names imply, in paraplegia, you lose the ability to use your legs and must live in a wheelchair for the rest of your life. In quadriplegia, you lose the ability to use not only your legs, but also your arms and hands, as well as a good portion of your torso.
Quadriplegia is by far the most catastrophic and life-changing form of paralysis that you can sustain. In fact, quadriplegia is a constantly life-threatening condition. Here not only can you not move or feel virtually your entire body, but you also require mechanical ventilation in order to breathe and speak. Quadriplegia renders you helpless, trapped in your own body and having to rely on the constant care of others and on machinery to keep you from dying.
This is general educational information only and not intended to provide legal advice.