A serious car accident can result in numerous injuries, including damage to the spinal cord. Depending on the extent of the damage and where on the spinal cord the injury occurred, you may also experience paralysis.
As explained by WebMD, there are many types of paralysis, each of which can have a different effect on the body. The type experienced after an accident has a major impact on the outcome and treatment options.
Complete vs. partial
Complete paralysis causes an inability to move or feel all affected muscles. With partial paralysis, people retain some control over and sensation in the affected muscles.
Localized vs. generalized
Localized paralysis affects only one area of the body. With generalized paralysis, the effect spreads out over several areas. Whether a person experiences localized or generalized paralysis depends on where injuries occurred to the brain and spinal cord.
Types of generalized paralysis
Monoplegia entails paralysis of only one limb, while diplegia occurs when paralysis affects two limbs on the same side of the body. Quadriplegia affects all four limbs, while paraplegia affects movement and feeling from the waist down.
Other types of paralysis
In addition to how paralysis affects different areas of the body, there are also different forms that can take place. Spastic forms cause the muscles to become stiff, which causes jerky movements. With flaccid forms, muscle tissues continuously sag until they shrink down.
All forms of paralysis require ongoing treatment and rehabilitation. While it is not always possible to restore movement and functionality to its previous state, most people can learn how to adapt to their injuries and lead normal, fulfilling lives.