Brain injuries have moved to the forefront of a national conversation regarding the seriousness of mental disease and the impact small head traumas may have on this. Brain injuries are often difficult to receive accurate settlement offers from since many small brain traumas will have a lasting impact in the years to come, which may be difficult to predict. However, brain injuries are now recognized for the serious injury they are, and the party accountable for the accident leading to the injury should be held liable for the resulting injuries, including the future projected costs of treating the injury. If you’ve been the victim of another’s negligence which led to your traumatic brain injury, contact the Omaha traumatic brain injury attorney at Knowles Law Firm.
What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury and How Is it Diagnosed?
A traumatic brain injury can occur when something impacts the head or brain with enough force to cause damage. A brain injury can temporarily or permanently affect brain cells. This can cause physical and/or cognitive changes in the victim. A traumatic brain injury comes from external forces, while an acquired brain injury stems from internal trauma.
If a victim notices potential signs of a brain injury, he or she should see a doctor. The doctor will perform a physical examination of the patient, including reflex tests. Then, the physician may order additional scans and tests, such as CT scans, to detect damage in the brain. Brain injuries such as swelling or bleeding may appear on CT scans and x-rays. From there, the physician will refer the patient to a specialist or recommend treatment.
Traumatic vs. Acquired Brain Injury
Nebraska has founded several councils dedicated to raising awareness on the prevalence of brain injuries, many of which go undetected for years. Brain injuries can be categorized into various levels of severity, including:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Acquired brain injury
- Mild brain injury
Traumatic brain injury refers to an injury caused by a direct blow to the head and can range from mild to extremely severe. Acquired brain injury is an injury which is non-traumatic, such as brain injuries sustained from drowning, stroke, or lightning strike. A mild brain injury does not refer to the scope of the injury itself, but to the physical trauma which caused the injury.
Brain injuries are often the result of a car accident, boat accident, or other unfortunate accident. As a result, these injuries are often treated shortly after the accident but may be overlooked in terms of future recovery. An experienced Omaha personal injury attorney will be able to assist you in better forecasting an appropriate level of damages
Traumatic Brain Injury Causes and Cases
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recognized that traumatic brain injuries are the cause of about 30 percent of all injury deaths. Traumatic brain injuries often occur after serious accidents involving a blow to the head which can jolt the normal function of the brain. In 2010 along, about 2.5 million emergency visits and hospitalizations involved traumatic brain injuries. Children are especially susceptible to lasting injuries after a blow to the head since their brains are still developing.
The brain is a delicate organ that can suffer damage in many different circumstances. Any impact that causes the brain to move around in the skull or strike its sides could cause a significant injury. Certain victims in Omaha have higher risks of sustaining brain injuries than others. Trauma to the head or brain via an open or closed head injury could occur in many types of accidents.
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Slip and falls
- Penetrating head injuries
- Workplace accidents
- Struck-by object
- Acts of violence
- Sports impacts
- Diving accidents
- Amusement park rides
Identifying the cause of a brain injury could help the victim hold someone liable. The party most at fault for causing the brain injury could be financially responsible for damages. In these situations, the injured victim may have grounds to file a tort claim against the at-fault party or parties. A brain injury lawsuit starts with recognizing who caused the accident.
Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries and Symptoms
A common kind of brain injury is a concussion. This is a mild traumatic brain injury. Other types of injuries to the brain include hematoma, diffuse axonal injury, edema, hemorrhage, contusion, and a penetrating injury. When the brain sustains damage, the victim can suffer many different symptoms. Each patient will have a unique experience. The type of brain injury and its effects will depend on the part of the brain injured, the severity of the impact and many other factors.
- Memory loss
- Trouble speaking
- Sensory issues
- Nausea or vomiting
- Sleep problems
- Mood changes
- Loss of consciousness
After any potential signs of a brain injury, a patient should seek medical treatment. Traumatic brain injuries are extremely serious. A patient can change status in a matter of seconds. The best thing a patient with a brain injury could do is get immediate medical care. A serious injury may require surgical intervention to stop bleeding in the brain or release pressure due to swelling. Sometimes, brain injury symptoms occur hours or days after the injury. It is important to go to the hospital after hitting your head in an accident, whether you notice symptoms right away or not.
Brain Injury Recovery
Brain injuries often go undetected shortly after an accident, which only leads to further complications in terms of treating the injury as well as correctly projecting the correct amount of damages after an accident. Personal injury claims are often brought after an accident and will include medical expenses, lost wages, and other items in the full claim. However, in cases such as brain injuries, it may be difficult to fully project what type of expense an injured party will need in the future, especially when the full scope of the brain injury does not manifest itself until years, even decades later.
An experienced personal injury attorney can assist you in working through these issues and will take into account medical professional’s opinions, as well as your ongoing progress to recovery in calculating an appropriate claim amount. Many brain injuries will lead to a full recovery while others may result in a slow deterioration of mental cognition. The attorneys of the Knowles Firm will closely consult with many different medical professionals to ensure you receive the amount in damages you deserve for your injuries.
Unfortunately, some people never fully recover from brain injuries. Many doctors refer to the treatment process as lifelong recovery. Most patients experience rapid improvement in the first six months. From there, however, progress can plateau and occur more slowly with time. The long-term effects of a traumatic brain injury can include cognitive problems, developmental delays, learning issues, speech impediments, physical challenges, memory loss and more. A patient could be permanently disabled from a bad brain injury. With treatments and rehabilitation, however, many patients can make full recoveries from brain damage.
Potential Recoverable Damages
The damages or monetary awards recoverable in a traumatic brain injury claim can range from medical expense reimbursement to punitive damage awards. You and your family could recover the full costs of your brain injury: hospital bills, future health care, lost wages, lost earning opportunities, physical pain and emotional suffering. A severe brain injury could be worth a significant amount of money with help from an attorney.
Work With Our Omaha Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer
If you or a loved one have received a brain injury after an accident, do not hesitate to contact the attorneys of the Knowles Law Firm. Our attorneys have years of experience in handling brain injury claims and we have many different experts we turn to in calculating the amount in damages related to brain injuries. Contact our Omaha, Nebraska offices today for your initial free consultation.