Understanding Traumatic Brain Injury Claims Caused by a Car Accident
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TBIs, or traumatic brain injuries, are very common during car accidents.
Car crashes are the leading causes of traumatic brain injury-related hospitalizations and deaths nationwide.
TBIs can be difficult to diagnose because you may not experience symptoms right away, and TBIs don’t show up on x-rays, MRIs, or CT scans.
They are also often mistakenly attributed to other accident-related injuries.
Symptoms of TBI after a car accident may not appear until days, weeks, or months after the accident.
Many people aren’t aware of TBI symptoms until they begin to resume everyday activities like returning to work.
All of these factors make it much more important to seek immediate medical attention as soon as they can after a car accident.
This will help both your physical and financial recovery.
Contact our TBI lawyers if you were in a car accident caused by someone else’s negligence.
In the article below, we will discuss the impact of TBIs after car accidents and how to get them covered in a personal injury claim.
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Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries
Car accidents are the leading causes of traumatic brain injuries.
If you have suffered one in a car crash and someone else was at fault, you have the right to file a head injury claim with the applicable insurance companies to be fully compensated for your damages.
In addition to car accidents, brain injuries can also be caused by sports accidents, slip-and-fall accidents, assaults, and defective or dangerous consumer products.
Any legal action pertaining to brain injuries will depend on the details of how the injury occurred.
A TBI after a car accident is commonly caused when your head strikes the steering wheel, window, dashboard, or another solid object during the accident.
But your brain can still be injured even if there is no direct blow or jolt to your head.
The force created by the sudden impact of a motor vehicle accident can cause your head to violently whip backward and then forward, which results in the person’s brain crashing first against the front interior of the skull and then against the back interior of the skull.
This commonly happens during whiplash.
This can result in a bruising on the brain, or a brain hemorrhage, which is bleeding from the brain within your skull.
The Severity of the Traumatic Brain Injury
Brain injuries are either considered mild or severe.
A traumatic brain injury is considered mild if a loss of consciousness lasts for less than 30 minutes.
The majority of TBIs are considered mild, but up to 15% of victims will experience symptoms for a year or more.
There are several signs and symptoms of a mild TBI, including:
- Coordination problems
- Sensory issues including the loss of smell, bad taste in the mouth, sensitivity to lights or sound
- Excessive sleep
- Changes in mood including violent outbursts
- Difficulty formulating thoughts or sentences
- Memory loss
Many victims of mild TBIs will eventually make a full recovery and regain a full quality of life.
If you are suffering from a moderate to severe traumatic brain injury, you will often lose consciousness for over an hour.
Moderate to Severe TBIs
You will experience symptoms of mild to severe TBI within days of the accident.
These symptoms can include:
- Regular bouts of nausea or vomiting
- Difficulty speaking or walking
- Clear fluid draining from your ears or nose
- Dilated pupils, either one or both
- Irritability, combative behavior
Your Symptoms Could Take Days or Weeks to Appear
The symptoms you eventually experience due to your TBI may not be immediately apparent.
Depending on the severity of your accident and injury, brain injury symptoms can develop over several days or even weeks following the accident
That’s why you should always see a doctor immediately after a car accident, no matter how you feel.
If you don’t see a doctor right away (again, you always should_ you need to see one immediately if you notice any behavioral or physical changes following a significant blow to your head during the accident.
You will need a thorough neurological examination or a brain imaging scan that can reveal any damage to the surface of your brain.
Is It Possible to Sue for TBI After a Car Accident?
It is definitely possible to sue for a TBI after a car accident.
If your car insurance company doesn’t want to pay for your injury or cuts off payments before you’ve recovered, you can sue for unpaid, overdue medical bills, attendant care, medical mileage, replacement services, and lost wages.
You can also sue the negligent driver for your economic damages as well as pain and suffering as a result of your accident-related injuries.
To do this, you first have to show that the other driver was indeed at-fault for causing the collision.
Types of Damages in Brain Injury Cases
There are two basic types of damages in personal injury cases.
These damages are known as special damages and general damages.
Special damages, or economic damages, are easily quantifiable, out-of-pocket expenses due to your injury.
These often include:
- The cost of repairing or replacing damaged property.
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- The cost of past and future medical treatment
General damages, or non-economic damages, aren’t very easily captured by a dollar figure.
These damages can include:
- The loss of enjoyment of life
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of companionship
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Emotional distress
Act Swiftly After Your Accident
Although TBIs aren’t visible, the effects of them are far reaching.
If you were injured in a car accident and believe that you may have sustained a traumatic brain injury, you should receive medical attention right away.
You need to obtain medical records and document the effects the injury is having on your daily life in a journal.
It would help if you also spoke with a brain injury lawyer because calculating the damages in a personal injury case can be tricky.
During an initial consultation, you and your attorney will discuss the potential negligence that caused your injury, if a settlement can be reached, and if a personal injury lawsuit may be the right option.
If you act swiftly after your accident and work with a skilled personal attorney, you may be able to collect monetary compensation for costs of medical treatments, loss of income, a reduced quality of life, and your pain and suffering.
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Work With an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney
Even if you believe you’ve only suffered a minor injury or no injuries at all, it’s still important to get the compensation you deserve for your damages.
Even suffering a minor traumatic brain injury can change your life.
If you are involved in a car accident and suffer a brain injury as a result, reach out to The Brown Firm today.
The Brown Firm is experienced in filing brain injury lawsuits, and they will stop at nothing to get you the compensation you deserve after your accident.
To schedule your free consultation with a personal injury lawyer with The Brown Firm, click the button below.
Our attorneys will answer all of your questions and help you get on the path to physical and financial recovery.
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