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If you are currently dealing with a form of spinal cord injuries, you know that they can be quite painful. Maybe you haven’t made it to the doctor yet. Whether you don’t have insurance, or you feel you can treat this injury on your own— the pain can be extremely difficult to bear. We highly advise that you see a doctor, especially if this injury occurred in the workplace. However, if you’re trying to diagnose the injury first, it’s important to understand that there are different types of these injuries. Types of spinal cord injuries can vary depending on what area of the spine becomes damaged.

Depending on which segment, you may experience different symptoms. In general, most of these injuries can split into two categories. First of which is incomplete spinal cord injuries. With these types of injuries, the cord severs only partly. However, in the case of complete spinal cord injuries, the cord becomes fully severed.

Spinal Cord Injuries: Which Part of Your Spine is Suffering?

Upper Vertebrae

Cervical spinal injuries. These exist in the upper part of the body. In general, this segment of the spinal cord make up seven vertebrae: C1-C7. Being that they make up the portion of the neck and work closely with the brain, these injuries can be the most serious. For the most part, any injury within this area can result in limited or absence of feeling from the shoulders on down the body.

Thoracic. Working the way down the spine, the thoracic region consists of the upper to middle part of the back. In this area, 12 vertebrae make up the region, numbered T1-T12.  Throughout T1 and T5, the nerves and muscles help regulate breathing. While the lower T6-T12 help control posture and coughing.spinal cord injuries

Lower Vertebrae

Lumbar spinal injuries. Within the lumbar section, you can find the largest vertebrae in your body. This is due to the fact that this portion supports the most weight. For this reason, injuries to this area normally cause a loss of function in the hips and legs. However, the upper parts of the body usually still maintain their normal use.

Sacral. This part of the spine exists at the very bottom and just above the tailbone. These vertebrae, numbered S1-S4, fuse five bones to make up its triangular shape. For the most part, injuries in this area only occurs during a serious fall. While these injuries may not leave you unable to walk, it can affect the nerves that control pelvic organs.

Diagnosing the right spinal cord injury is extremely important

Your spinal cord is pretty much your lifeline. It holds you up, transports information, supports your brain, and has much to do with nerve function. So, if you face an injury in this region— it’s important to have it treated properly. A spinal cord injury doesn’t have to hinder your function indefinitely, but it does have the potential. So speak with a doctor, come up with a plan of action, and follow it closely. We wish you luck in the journey to recovery, and offer our services if you might need them.