Brain injuries caused by trauma often result in permanent impairment or death. TBIs are among the most debilitating traumatic injuries and are often the result of someone else’s negligent, careless, or violent act. Auto accidents, falls and other premises accidents, accidents in the workplace, and assault may produce brain damage.
Closed Head Injuries
In about seventy-five percent of the approximately 17 million brain injuries that occur every year in the U.S., the impact to the head leaves the skull and the membrane between the brain and the skull (dura mater) intact. These are closed head injuries and can range from mild concussions to diffuse axonal injuries, which commonly result in coma and death.
Survivors of closed head injuries often suffer long-term or permanent physical, psychological, and cognitive impairment. The following are types of closed head injuries:
- A diffuse axonal injury or damage to the axon of the neuron is often fatal; it results in coma and usually causes permanent brain damage or persistent vegetative state in survivors.
- An intracranial hematoma is a pooling of blood caused by a bleeding in the brain, either under the dura mater or between the dura mater and arachnoid membrane (subdural hematoma) or between the brain and the skull (epidural hematoma). Intracranial hematomas create pressure on the brain and are potentially fatal.
- A concussion is a closed head injury from an impact that causes temporary disruption of normal brain function
- A brain contusion is bruising of the brain tissue
Open Head Injuries
When an object penetrates the skull and membranes around the brain and damages brain tissue, this is an open head injury. The foreign object can introduce contamination into the brain and may cause infection. Open head injuries are often caused by car accidents, falls, gunshot and stab wounds, and construction accidents.
An open brain injury can be seen, but the symptoms of closed brain injuries aren’t always apparent immediately after an accident. Brain swelling occurs over hours or days.
Symptoms of Closed Head Injuries
These are some signs that you might have a brain injury:
- Blurred vision
- Slurred speech
Additional symptoms of severe closed head injuries may include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Loss of coordination
- Loss of bladder and/or bowel control
- Persistent vegetative state
Half of those who survive a traumatic brain injury develop psychosocial symptoms. Mental health problems that follow brain injuries include:
- Social withdrawal
- Executive functions challenges
- Memory loss
- Problems reading, speaking, and writing
- Personality changes
Much of who you are depends on the functioning of your brain. When you have suffered brain damage, you may feel that your intellect, personality, character, and sense of self have been damaged along with your brain. An experienced brain injury attorney knows that your losses go far beyond the cost of your medical bills and extend to every aspect of your life.
Attorney Steve Proudfoot understands that you may never be able to work again and need lifetime medical treatment, mental health services, and personal care, but that’s not all. He’ll demand compensation for all non-economic damages that have changed your life: loss of ability to do the things you once enjoyed, damage to personal relationships, loss of ability to contribute to society and to achieve your life’s goals, loss of satisfaction with life, and more.
If you or a family member suffered a brain injury caused by someone else’s negligence, call Steve Proudfoot Law today for a free consultation.