Transverse myelitis is a neurological disorder in which the spinal cord becomes inflamed, and the swelling restricts communication between nerves in the spinal cord and other parts of the body. The inflammation attacks and damages the substance that coats nerve fibers, called myelin. Subsequently, symptoms will appear, but it can take hours, days, or even weeks for them to begin. While the symptoms of transverse myelitis are typically easy to describe and observe, they are frequently mistaken as indications of other medical conditions. When that happens, an accurate diagnosis and proper treatment are delayed, and patients suffer unnecessarily.
Transverse myelitis is not a condition that doctors see often. Still, when it does occur and isn’t treated effectively, there can be long-lasting effects for patients – even permanent paralysis.
For some patients, transverse myelitis develops quickly, while in others, it happens gradually over several weeks. Where the damage occurs in the spinal cord often dictates which areas of the body are affected, with symptoms appearing where the damage is and below.
The common symptoms of transverse myelitis include:
Additionally, symptoms like loss of appetite, flu-like symptoms, muscle spasms, respiratory problems, sexual dysfunction, depression and anxiety, and chronic pain have been reported in some instances of transverse myelitis.
The exact cause of transverse myelitis isn’t known in about half of cases. However, multiple conditions are known to cause it in the other half. Doctors who treat the condition must identify the cause quickly to treat cases appropriately. The prompt, effective treatment provides the best chance of a complete recovery from transverse myelitis.
Known causes of transverse myelitis include:
While not every case of transverse myelitis could have been prevented, some cases could have. When a medical error leads to a misdiagnosis or a delay in diagnosis, it may be considered medical malpractice, and the doctors or other medical professionals who made the error could be held liable. Some possible medical mistakes that could result in missed or delayed diagnoses include:
Even though transverse myelitis isn’t as common as many other serious medical conditions, when it occurs, the results can be devastating to patients and their families. While some patients with transverse myelitis will be diagnosed quickly and treated appropriately, many others will not. Missed or delayed diagnosis of transverse myelitis can cause severe spinal cord injuries and permanent disabilities, for which ongoing medical care is required.
If you suffer from severe, long-term effects of transverse myelitis that was misdiagnosed or delayed in diagnosis, you may have a valid medical malpractice claim. These types of cases are complicated and can be challenging to prove. You need to contact an experienced medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible to discuss your case. You may be entitled to compensation for damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and more.
At Ross Feller Casey, our legal team is ready to help you with your transverse myelitis lawsuit. We are committed to protecting your rights and will fight for the financial recovery you deserve. Whether a settlement is reached or your case goes to trial, our attorneys are prepared to litigate your lawsuit. Call the Ross Feller Casey law firm today to discuss your case with one of our leading medical malpractice lawyers. You will not be charged for the consultation or lawyer fees unless there’s a financial recovery.
Disclaimer: Ross Feller Casey, LLP provides legal advice only after an attorney-client relationship is formed. Our website is an introduction to the firm and does not create a relationship between our attorneys and clients. An attorney-client relationship is formed only after a written agreement is signed by the client and the firm. Because every case is unique, the description of awards and summary of cases successfully handled are not intended to imply or guarantee that same success in other cases. Ross Feller Casey, LLP represents catastrophically injured persons and their families in injury and wrongful death cases, providing legal representation in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.