It’s easy to see why traumatic brain injury (TBI) has gained a reputation as “the silent epidemic.” Despite the immense physical, psychological, and financial toll experienced by victims and their families, many victims suffer in silence. Victims of brain injuries need specialized medical attention and legal assistance when pursuing personal injury claims. If you or a loved one has suffered a serious brain injury and believe you have a lawsuit, it makes sense to contact a Lakewood Ranch brain injury lawyer to discuss your legal options.
What Is a Brain Injury?
A severe brain injury can alter the lives of the injury victim and their loved ones. Brain injuries can result from a variety of accidents. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the following are the top causes of brain injuries:
- Slip and falls,
- Unintentional blunt trauma,
- Motor vehicle accidents,
- Physical assault,
- Medical malpractice, and
- Sports or recreation.
The symptoms and signs range from mild to severe, including but not limited to the following:
- Loss of consciousness,
- Nausea and vomiting,
- Vision changes,
- Difficulty concentrating or memory problems,
- Disturbed sleep or fatigue,
- Loss of sense of smell or taste,
- Slurred speech,
- Impulsivity and combativeness,
- Loss of coordination or dizziness,
- Weakness or numbness in the arms or legs,
- Coma, and
The type of brain injury you suffer will determine the symptoms you experience and the overall effect on your life. Below, we discuss some of the most common types of brain injuries.
Traumatic Brain Injury
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) happens when some impact damages the brain. TBIs vary in level of severity. For example, mild TBIs, such as concussions, can cause temporary symptoms, while more serious TBIs can result in life-long, debilitating damage or even death.
Symptoms of a TBI and concussion are not always noticeable, so those involved in an accident should seek medical attention immediately. Telling your doctor whether you lost consciousness is vital to receiving the proper treatment.
Acquired Brain Injury
Another common brain injury to be aware of is an acquired brain injury, also called a secondary brain injury. This type of injury is unique because an acquired brain injury can occur without impacting your head.
Any accident that restricts oxygen or blood flow to your brain can cause an acquired brain injury. For example, if you were hurt so badly in a crash that you stopped breathing for several minutes before being revived, you might suffer an acquired brain injury due to a lack of oxygen.
Additionally, physical changes to the brain could result in emotional dysregulation. Being unable to control your emotions often leads to depression. Depression may also result from the difficulties of adjusting to a new disability.
It is also important to point out the potential harm brain swelling can cause after an accident. The initial trauma of an impact to the head can cause the brain to swell. Swelling can occur throughout our body and is the body’s response to many different types of injury.
Brain swelling is another silent killer that often overcomes the victim before they know it’s happening. Close monitoring of a head trauma victim is essential for at least 24 hours after their injury.
What If My Brain Injury Was Caused by Someone Else?
A brain injury victim might have a claim or lawsuit when another person’s negligent actions caused their injury. A brain injury lawsuit is a way for victims to receive financial compensation. A successful brain injury lawsuit results in financial compensation to the victim for various losses, including medical bills and future care needs. If you are in this situation, a Lakewood Ranch brain injury attorney is ready to help. There are very specific legal and medical requirements you must meet to prove your case and successfully attain compensation.
What Do I Need to Prove?
As mentioned above, the injury must result from another’s negligence to file a personal injury lawsuit or claim for a brain injury. In a negligence claim, the attorney representing the injured party needs to prove the following:
- Duty of care,
- Breach of duty,
- Causation, and
Let’s look at each of these individually.
Duty and Breach
Duty of care refers to an individual’s legal obligation to exercise a reasonable level of care to prevent harm to others. For instance, a doctor must perform up to the standard of care established by the medical community. A breach of that duty might occur when a doctor operates unacceptably by the medical community’s standards.
There must be a direct link between the duty of care owed, the breach of that duty, and your injuries—and this link proves causation. More often than not, you will need to gather evidence, like the testimony of expert witnesses, to prove the other party was the only cause of your injuries. Proving causation can be a tricky part of the case, but a Lakewood Ranch traumatic brain injury lawyer knows how to handle it for you.
Lastly, for a victim to file a claim, the injury must have caused damages. Medical records and bills tend to prove the bulk of the damages. So, it’s important that your medical records accurately reflect your injuries. You might not be fully compensated if you don’t document all your injuries and symptoms.
If you suffered a head injury because of another person’s negligence, you could use a brain injury attorney in Lakewood Ranch. Such a lawyer will know a lot about traumatic brain injuries, where to seek proper medical treatment, and how to present evidence to the insurance companies to get you the compensation you need.
Brain Injury Lawyer in Lakewood Ranch
Hiring a TBI lawyer from James Horne Law PA will ensure that your case is handled in the best possible manner. The firm is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and James Horne was rated an AV-Preeminent attorney by Martindale-Hubbell. Contact us today for a free, confidential consultation.