Los Angeles Spinal Cord Injury Lawyer

Suffered a Spinal Cord Injury? Our Firm Can Help

Spinal cord injuries are catastrophic in nature. They impair the brain’s ability to communicate with the rest of the body. Depending on where the injury occurs, this can have a permanent impact on numerous parts of the body, including movement, sensation, and one’s ability to control his or her physiological processes.

Our team of experienced spinal cord injury lawyers is ready to fight for you to recover the maximum compensation owed to you. We offer a sound, team-oriented approach when handling personal injury cases involving spinal cord injuries. Not only can our attorneys aggressively advocate for you in settlement or trial, but they can also guide you through the entire process with compassion and empathy.

Talk to a Los Angeles spinal cord injury lawyer today about your case or contact our firm to schedule a no-cost consultation.

(323) 653-6311

Schedule Your Free Spinal Cord Injury Case Evaluation

What Are Spinal Cord Injuries?

A spinal cord injury is damage to the spinal cord that causes temporary or permanent disruptions below the site of injury. Spinal cord injuries are typically the result of trauma or disease, with auto and motorcycle accidents accounting for almost half of all new injuries each year.

It has been suggested that while head injuries are the leading cause of motorcycle deaths, spinal cord injuries are potentially more devastating to individuals who survive the injury.  

Types of Spinal Cord Injuries

The seriousness of a spinal cord injury is largely determined by the level of the spinal cord where the injury occurs; the further up the injury, the more regions of the body that are likely to be affected. For example, injuries to the spinal cord around the neck can impair the brain’s ability to send and receive signals from the respiratory muscles, which can have a significant impact on breathing.

Spinal cord injuries at the cervical (neck) level are typically the most severe, particularly where the damage is in the C1 – C4 level. An injury at these levels can result in full body paralysis, impair one’s ability to speak, stop someone from being able to breathe independently, or even cause death.

Spinal cord injuries at the thoracic (chest) level are equally severe. The thoracic spine is located in the upper and middle part of the back. Twelve vertebrae are located in the thoracic spine and are numbered T-1 to T-12. Each number corresponds with the nerves in that section of the spinal cord.

T-1 through T-5 nerves intervate the muscles in the upper chest, mid-back, and abdomen. They also help control muscles in the rib cage and lungs. T-6 through T-12 nerves affect abdominal and back muscles. These nerves and muscles are important for balance and posture, and they help one cough and control the lower portion of their airway. Paralysis at the thoracic level typically results in loss of sensation and movement below the level of the injury, including the inability to control one’s bladder and bowel.   

Spinal cord injuries at the lumbar (lower back) level can also result in permanent injury. The lumbar spine is the lowest portion of the spinal column. The lumbar spine carries the most weight. Injuries to spinal cord in the lumbar region (L-1 through L-5) generally result in some loss of function in the hips and legs.

The severity of the consequences from a spinal cord injury is referred to as the “completeness” of the injury:

  • Complete spinal cord injuries entail a complete loss of sensory and motor function below the site of the injury. If you cannot feel or move a particular body part, then your spinal cord injury would be classified as complete.
  • Incomplete spinal cord injuries entail a partial loss of sensation and movement. Incomplete spinal injuries vary depending on the extent of the damage. to the spinal cord.

The impaired communication between the brain and the body because of disruption in the spinal cord often results in some form of paralysis. According to Healthline, paralysis “can be localized or generalized, partial or complete, and temporary or permanent.” 

Localized paralysis only affects one particular part of the body. For example, the face. Generalized paralysis can be broken down into the following types:

Monoplegia affects one arm or one leg

Hemiplegia affects one arm and one leg, on the same side of the body

Paraplegia affects both legs

Quadriplegia, also known as tetraplegia, affects both arms and both legs

Spinal Cord Injury Case Focus:

Pannu v. Land Rover (2011)

Aerial image of the Diamond St. Intersection where Amir Ekbatani's motorcycle accident occurred
Side-by-side images of roof crush tests performed on two different Land Rover Discoverys

Total Award – $25,281,078.00

On December 14th, 2003, Sukhsagar Pannu was travelling in his Land Rover Discovery, when another vehicle sideswiped him. The collision caused Mr. Pannu to lose control of the vehicle, which subsequently rolled over multiple times before coming to rest upside down. Sukhsagar suffered catastrophic injuries to his spinal cord, rendering him paralyzed and radically altering his life and livelihood forever.

It was then that Garo and Armen stepped in, recovering a multi-million dollar award for Mr. Pannu on the grounds that the rollover propensity and defectiveness of the Discovery’s roof was responsible for Sukhsagar’s injuries.


Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Injury

The symptoms of spinal cord injury can be so severe as to virtually impact a person’s entire body. Some of the most frequently experienced symptoms are:

  • Loss of movement, particularly in the limbs
  • Loss of speech
  • Loss of sensation, or uncomfortable sensations like tingling
  • Loss of bladder or bowel control
  • Respiratory problems, such as difficulty breathing
  • Muscle weakness
  • Pain or pressure
  • Changes in sexual function
  • Spasms 

Furthermore, spinal cord injuries can put individuals at risk of a range of secondary complications, including:

  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Muscle spasms
  • Mood disorders, including depression
  • Osteoporosis
  • Pressure ulcers (bed sores)
  • Muscle tone issues:
    • Spasticity (uncontrolled tightening of the muscle)
    • Flaccidity (lack of muscle tone)
  • Obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease

While the emotional devastation of a spinal cord injury cannot be understated, the financial impact of a spinal cord injury is equally enormous. In addition to suffering a devastating lost earning capacity, an individual with a spinal cord injury will usually become entirely dependent on caregivers. Over one’s lifetime, the cost of this care is into the millions of dollars.

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Let Our Firm Fight for Your Rights and Your Future

We offer a sound, team-oriented approach when handling catastrophic injury cases involving spinal cord injuries. Not only can our attorneys aggressively advocate for you in settlement or trial, but they can also guide you through the entire process with compassion and empathy. We understand the difficult situation you are in and it’s our goal to help you recover the fair compensation you are owed.

With more than 40 years of combined experience, our Los Angeles spinal cord injury attorneys are focused on recovering the maximum compensation on your behalf, whether through settlement or at trial. We understand that spinal cord injuries can have a profound impact on somebody’s life. We handle every aspect of your case from start to finish so you can focus on getting the treatment you need.

Our firm offers exceptional talent, abundant resources, tireless dedication, and years of experience to give you the best chance of success in obtaining maximum compensation. Led by our award-winning attorneys, Garo Mardirossian and Armen Akaragian, we are prepared to provide you with aggressive representation and personalized legal guidance you need.

Talk to a Los Angeles spinal cord injury lawyer about your case or contact our firm to schedule a no-cost consultation.

(323) 653-6311

Schedule Your Free Spinal Cord Injury Case Evaluation

Banner image from Unsplash

Armen Akaragian | Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney



Admitted to practice in 2006, Armen has arbitrated, tried, and settled several cases which have resulted in multi-million dollar verdicts and settlements.

Sources cited in this article:

  1. Spinal Cord InjuryAmerican Association of Neurological Surgeons
  2. Spinal Rehabilitation Center: Injury and Paralysis Information Shepherd Center
  3. Spinal Cord InjuryNational Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke
  4. Spinal Cord Injury World Health Organization
  5. Non-fatal spine injuries resulting from motorcycle crashesScience Direct
  6. Acute Spinal Cord InjuryHopkins Medicine
  7. Cervical Spinal Cord Injury: Symptoms and PrognosisShepherd Center
  8. Thoracic Spinal Cord Injuries: Symptoms and RecoveryShepherd Center
  9. Lumbar Spinal Cord Injury Overview Shepherd Center
  10. Spinal Cord InjuryMayo Clinic
  11. ParalysisHealthline


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