What Is Cauda Equina Syndrome?

Cauda equina syndrome is an emergency condition forming in the lower back that typically requires surgery. Individuals with cauda equina syndrome are often admitted to the hospital right away so they can undergo treatment. Here, we want to properly define this rare disorder, discuss its effects on our body, and talk about how this happens in the first place. Additionally, we want to discuss whether or not individuals can recover compensation if their cauda equina syndrome is found to have been caused by the negligent actions of someone else.

What is Cauda Equina Syndrome?

The collection of nerves at the end of our spinal cords are known as the cauda equina, named so due to their resemblance to a horse’s tail. The individual nerve roots at the end of the spinal cord provide motor and sensory function to the legs and pelvic region. These nerves actually extend beyond the end of the actual spinal cord itself.

Cauda equina syndrome occurs anytime there is a dysfunction of multiple lumbar or sacral nerve roots in the cauda equina.

Cauda equina syndrome is usually caused by a herniated disc in the lumbar region of our backs. In most cases, CES is caused by a much larger disc herniation than individuals usually experience. However, if a person has a smaller spinal canal, often caused by arthritis, even a smaller disc herniation can result in a person experiencing CES.

Additionally, cauda equina syndrome can also be caused by birth abnormalities, lumbar spinal stenosis, spinal infections, spinal lesions or tumors, spinal surgery complications, and more. This condition can also be caused by outside trauma.

Some of the main types of outside trauma that could lead to a person experiencing cauda equina syndrome include:

  • Car accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Construction accidents
  • Gunshot wounds

Recovering Compensation for Cauda Equina Syndrome

After a person has been diagnosed with cauda equina syndrome, they generally have to undergo emergency surgery. The goal in these situations is to free up compressed nerve roots to give them the best chance of recovery. Left untreated, CES can lead to permanent paralysis of the lower limbs as well as incontinence. It is generally recommended that individuals with CES receive treatment within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms.

Even after emergency surgery, individuals have to check in with their surgeon and medical professionals regularly in order to continue the healing process. Many cauda equina syndrome patients have to undergo long-term follow-up rehabilitation in order to make as full of a recovery as possible.

If you or somebody you care about has developed cauda equina syndrome as a result of the actions of another individual, entity, or business, you may be entitled to compensation. No two cases of cauda equina syndrome are exactly alike, particularly cases arising from traumatic incidents. However, an attorney can get involved and work diligently to prove liability in these situations. This will include gathering enough evidence to show insurance carriers or a personal injury exactly what happened.

In a successful personal injury case related to cauda equina syndrome, victims should be able to recover compensation for their medical bills, lost income, and various types of pain and suffering damages.