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Neck Fractures

Following a neck fracture, ongoing health issues can include chronic pain, stiffness, and reduced range of motion in the neck. There’s also a risk of nerve damage, which can lead to numbness, tingling, or weakness in the arms or hands. In severe cases involving spinal cord injury, there can be lasting paralysis or loss of function in certain body parts. Additionally, such injuries can lead to complications like arthritis or degenerative disc disease over time. The extent of these issues largely depends on the severity of the fracture and the success of the treatment.

Man with neck fracture wearing neck support

Helpful Information

A neck fracture is a break in one or more of the cervical vertebrae, the bones in the neck. This type of fracture often results from high-energy trauma like vehicle accidents or falls. Symptoms can include pain, swelling, bruising, and in severe cases, paralysis or neurological issues due to spinal cord involvement. Treatment varies based on the fracture’s severity and location, ranging from immobilisation with a brace or cervical collar to surgery. When a neck fracture is sustained due to someone else’s negligence, there are often strong grounds to bring an injury compensation claim.

What are the most serious consequences of a neck fracture?

The most serious consequences include permanent paralysis, loss of muscle function, and loss of sensation, particularly if the spinal cord is damaged. This can lead to quadriplegia or paraplegia, depending on the injury level. There’s also a risk of respiratory failure if the high cervical spine is involved. Additionally, complications such as chronic pain, long-term disability, and increased susceptibility to conditions like arthritis and spinal deformities can occur. These severe outcomes significantly impact quality of life and may require lifelong medical care and support.

What are the most common causes of neck fractures?

The most common causes of neck fractures are high-energy impacts such as those from car accidents, falls from a significant height, and sports injuries, especially in contact sports like football or rugby. Diving into shallow water is another frequent cause. These incidents often result in a sudden, forceful impact or extreme stress on the neck, leading to a fracture. In older adults, neck fractures can also occur due to weaker bones from conditions like osteoporosis, even with relatively minor falls or impacts. Additionally, a direct blow to the neck from a heavy object can cause a fracture.

In what sort of circumstances is it possible to bring an injury claim following a neck fracture?

An injury claim is possible under circumstances where the injury resulted from another party’s negligence or wrongful action. This includes scenarios like car accidents due to another driver’s recklessness, workplace injuries resulting from inadequate safety measures, or slips and falls in public places where the property owner failed to maintain safe conditions. In sports, if the injury occurred due to non-compliance with safety regulations or equipment malfunction, a claim might be viable. The key factor is proving that the injury was caused by someone else’s failure to act responsibly or by a deliberate harmful action.

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Flor McCarthy

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wears multiple hats, not only as the managing partner of one of Ireland’s leading law firms, but also as an author, speaker and an acknowledged expert in client service, innovation and marketing.

Beginning his academic journey at UCC, Flor furthered his education with a master’s degree in law from UCD. After gaining valuable experience as a solicitor in Dublin, the allure of home and the family brought him back to West Cork to contribute his expertise to the family business.
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John McCarthy

John McCarthy

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is a seasoned solicitor with almost 20 years of experience, specialises in personal injury and medical negligence claims, focusing particularly on high-value compensation cases. His extensive litigation experience spans Circuit Court, High Court and Supreme Court levels.

John's practice involves a diverse range of cases, from personal injury and wrongful death to property damage, defective products, professional negligence and judicial reviews.
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