Levels of spinal cord injury High Cervical Nerves (C1-C4) Damage to this part of the spinal cord is the most severe. Paralysis will occur to the arms, trunk and legs (known as Tetraplegia) and breathing, bladder and bowel function will be impaired. Low-Cervical Nerves (C5-C8) Nerve damage here will affect the corresponding nerves that control arms and hands. A person with this level of injury may be able to breathe on their own and speak normally. Bladder and bowel function will be impaired. Thoracic Nerves (T1 – T12) This is damage to nerves corresponding to muscles in the chest, mid back and abdomen and causes paralysis to the legs (known as Paraplegia). Bladder and bowel function will be impaired. Lumber Nerves (L1 – L5) Injuries here result in some loss of function in the hips and legs, and also affect bowel and bladder function. The injured person may need a wheelchair or may walk with braces. Sacral Nerves (S1 – S5) Injury here results in some loss of function in the hips and legs, and will require special equipment to manage bladder and bowel function, although the injured person will most likely be able to walk.