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Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers 604-602-9000

ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers 604-602-9000
Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers 604-602-9000

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers Lorne MacLean, QC and Spencer MacLean

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers know that Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injuries are amongst the most devastating and feared injuries for a Vancouver ICBC car accident victim. Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury lawyers understand that the spine is made up of 26 bone discs also known as vertebrae. Many spinal cord and spine injuries are caused by Vancouver ICBC car accidents. Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury lawyers know these injuries and their symptoms can result from displaced bone fragments or bruised ligaments, or damage to the spinal cord tissue, impacting the nerve cells which carry signals from the brain throughout the body.

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers 604-602-9000 at MacLean Personal Injury will meet with you for free and we will only get paid when the case is settled or the judge or jury gives judgment in your Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury case. Our experienced personal injury team has offices located in downtown Vancouver, Surrey, Richmond, Kelowna and Fort St. John, British Columbia.

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers Focus On The Severity and Duration of Spinal Cord Injury

Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury lawyers at MacLean Personal Injury are well aware that spinal cord injuries can be temporary or permanent, depending on what part of the spine and spinal cord is damaged coupled with the severity of the damage.

Our skilled and experienced Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury lawyers at MacLean Personal Injury are aware that spinal cord injuries need the best possible treatment and therapy and cutting edge developments in this area are occurring daily. Unfortunately, the spinal cord does not have the ability to recover and repair itself from injury like other parts of the body. Vancouver ICBC car accident injuries to the upper area of the spinal cord and in the neck can lead to quadriplegia-paralysis, resulting in partial or total loss of all four limbs and torso. Injures to the spinal cord in the lower back area can lead to paraplegia-paralysis, or impairment of the lower extremities. These injuries are devastating to a person’s being and their financial self-sufficiency.

Our Vancouver ICBC spinal cord injury lawyers note the judgment in the recent case of (Arletto v. Kin,) http://www.courts.gov.bc.ca/jdb-txt/sc/16/00/2016BCSC0077.htm the plaintiff was injured in a 2010 motor vehicle accident, suffering a myriad of injuries, the most critical being a disc herniation in his neck, affecting his career as a longshoreman.

Madam Justice Dillon awarded $110,000 in non-pecuniary damages and stated the following:

[8] The MRI performed on May 5, 2011 confirmed the presence of a left-sided posterolateral disc protrusion at C5/6 with associated annular tear. The disc protrusion impinged upon the nerve root and spinal cord. Dr. Nguyen concluded that the findings from the MRI were consistent with Arletto’s complaints of left-sided neck pain and associated complaints of changes in feelings in his left arm. He also found that “… in light of the lack of … other degenerative disc changes, the MRI findings of left sided C5/6 disc herniation and tear are likely the result of his motor vehicle accident”. Because myofascial pain and disc herniation pain present in similar fashion, Dr. Nguyen pursued treatment to determine the primary source of the plaintiff’s complaints involving his neck and left arm.

[30] The overwhelming medical opinions and testimony lead to the conclusion that the plaintiff did not have a pre-existing degenerative condition of the cervical spine. He was very healthy and had not been to a doctor in years.

[31] Dr. Chin stated that there was a risk of further progression of the disc protrusion resulting in worsening symptoms in the future due to repeat injury or trauma. He considered that Arletto was vulnerable to this risk given the nature of his occupation and the fact of disease progression in the absence of additional trauma. Non-surgical management was recommended for now but the possibility of surgery in the future was not ruled out. Dr. Loomer thought that surgery could be a therapeutic consideration if Arletto’s symptoms became intolerable.

[32] Dr. Nguyen also thought that there was an increased risk of progression of the disc protrusion with the plaintiff’s work. He recommended on-site ergonomic assessment but did not realize that Arletto changes his lift truck daily such that adaptation for individual ergonomics is not practical. He concluded that repetitive neck movement placed Arletto at risk for progression not only of disc herniation, but also arm weakness and worsening neck pain. In cross-examination, Dr. Nguyen said that Arletto was not a candidate for surgery now but that he could be in the future if the pain symptoms were accompanied by weakness or sensory loss.

[33] Dr. Stancer said that the whooshing sounds that the plaintiff experiences in his left ear are not treatable. The symptoms had not improved over time and are likely to continue indefinitely. The same was said for the headaches with the expectation that they would continue in the same pattern with resultant sleep disruption.

[34] A functional work capacity evaluation performed by Jodi Fischer (“Fischer”), an occupational therapist, confirmed that the plaintiff continues to work as a longshoreman more out of perseverance than full physical suitability. Arletto is able to do the work, but with symptoms. His work results in pain and functional compromise but Arletto is able to tolerate the pain through frequent breaks and lessening work as the work day progresses. The plaintiff will have to be selective regarding the work that he chooses to keep his symptoms manageable.

[35] It is now over five years since the accident. Only the soft tissue injury to the lower back has healed. The plaintiff has continued to work despite shifting pain and other symptoms. There appears no resolution to symptoms from his ongoing injuries. He has lost whatever enjoyment he had from what had already been a limited social life. He continues to look after his personal needs, in keeping with his non-malingering attitude. He has been perseverant and dedicated. As stated by Dr. Stancer, Arletto has coped surprisingly well in the face of continuing pain and uncertainty about his future.

[44] The plaintiff’s situation is unique. The comparison cases are helpful but only indicators of how others’ pain and suffering were dealt with.

[45] Arletto was 47 years old at the time of the accident. He had worked his way up to a full time union job as a longshoreman driving a forklift truck and enjoyed some seniority in that position. He was single but with strong family ties and had looked after his sister. He was driving his nephew to a game when the accident occurred. He was known to be private and reserved but enjoyed the collegiality of the union hall. He was healthy and had never been to a massage or physiotherapist.

[46] Arletto is now 52 years old. He suffers from permanent pain in his neck and shoulder blade and has numbness and tingling down his left arm and into his fingers. He suffered a left-sided disc protrusion at C5/6 with associated annular tear in the accident. The protrusion has impinged the nerve and spinal cord, causing increased pain. He has undergone trigger point injections and two nerve root blocks to relieve the pain with only temporary relief. He has tinnitus and vertigo as a result of the accident. He suffers headaches about three times per week that interrupt sleep. He takes pain medication as required but not often because it interferes with work. A lower back soft tissue injury resolved after just less than two and a half years. Work aggravates his pain. His work has been permanently affected to the point that he has reduced working hours, given up hope of improving his union rating by becoming a crane operator, and planned for an earlier retirement. His family and other relationships have suffered and he cannot tolerate crowds or a noisy family dinner.

[47] An appropriate award for non-pecuniary damages in this case is $110,000.

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers

Vancouver ICBC Spinal Cord Injury Lawyers at MacLean Personal Injury will meet you at any of our 5 offices in Vancouver, Surrey, Kelowna, Fort St John and Richmond BC or at your home and even the hospital. Call us across BC toll free at 1-877-602-9900.



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