“Take me to Grady” – trauma center care reduces rate of paralysis after spinal cord injury

If you ever suffer a major injury in metro Atlanta and are still able to talk, remember to say, "take me to Grady."  This is important because treatment at  a Level 1 trauma center significantly improves prospects of successful outcome. A recent article on "The Effects of Trauma Center Care, Admission Volume, and Surgical Volume on Paralysis After Traumatic Spinal Cord Injury" published in Annals of Surgery  concludes that trauma center care is associated with reduced paralysis after traumatic spinal cord injury, perhaps because of greater use of spinal surgery.  Hospitals that do not have trauma centers follow national guidelines to triage patients to trauma centers less than half the time, keeping patients in their facilities when they should be transported to a Level 1 trauma center.

So, as I said earlier, if you are in a serious accident within a 100 miles radius of Atlanta, remember these four words: "take me to Grady."


Ken Shigley, author of Georgia Law of Torts: Trial Preparation & Practice, is  a Certified Civil Trial Advocate of the National Board of Trial Advocacy, and has been listed as a "Super Lawyer" (Atlanta Magazine), among the "Legal Elite" (Georgia Trend Magazine), and in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers . He practices law at the Atlanta law firm of Chambers, Aholt & Rickard, and has broad experience in catastrophic personal injury, spinal cord injury, wrongful death, products liabilitybrain injury and burn injury cases. He is also president-elect of the State Bar of Georgia. This post is subject to our ethical disclaimer.