What are your rights after suffering a brain or head injury in Florida?
Have you or someone you loved suffered from a brain injury?
The main types of brain injuries from car accidents and other personal injuries typically fall into 4 categories. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can occur to the skull, brain or scalp. Potential complications and necessary medical intervention will depend upon the location and severity of the brain injury.
It’s important to understand how physicians and insurance companies handle head and brain injury cases. If you have sustained a traumatic brain injury, it is imperative that you consult with an attorney experienced with traumatic brain injury law.
Common examples of head and brain injuries
There are 4 primary types of TBI.
A concussion is considered a minor brain injury resulting from an impact to the head, shaking or a sudden movement like whiplash. Frequently, a concussion will not show up in an imaging test. However, they should be considered serious and treated appropriately.
You may experience headaches, memory loss, problems with concentration and disorientation. Concussions can be dangerous if you have multiple concussions over time, or if you sustain a second concussion before the first heals. This is known as Second Impact Syndrome (SIS).
A contusion is when your brain tissue bruises. Similar to a bruise on your skin, contusions result from the leaking and breaking of small blood vessels. The leaking may cause many issues that relate to the build-up of pressure.
Brain contusions may result from any impact to your head. For instance, a contusion may happen in an auto accident if your head hits the steering wheel.
If you experience an impact to your head, your brain may sustain a contusion directly under the impact site, on the opposite side of the impact (when the brain is slammed against the other side of the skull), or both. These are categorized as either “coup” or “contrecoup” brain injuries.
Similar to concussions, contusions may range from minor to very severe. Severe contusions may result in confusion, loss of consciousness, emotional distress, exhaustion or agitation. Severe contusions can cause brain swelling, prevent oxygenation and other serious health consequences.
#3: Penetrating injury
A penetrating brain injury happens when an object pierces through your skull. That object, skin, hair or fragments of the skull may make contact with your brain. The force and the contact with a foreign object may cause severe injury to a specific area or could injure a large portion of the brain. This can happen in a car accident, for instance, when a piece of broken windshield penetrates or breaks the skull.
#4: Anoxic brain injury
Anoxic brain injury happens when your brain fails to receive enough oxygen to function properly. It takes only 4-5 minutes without enough oxygen for brain cells to start dying. Because your blood carries oxygen to your brain, anoxic brain damage frequently happens due to a blockage of blood flow.
A blockage may happen due to a stroke, blood clot, heart attack or trauma. It is also possible for blood flow to be normal, but the blood isn’t carrying enough oxygen. This may be due to drowning, poisoning, choking, carbon monoxide poisoning, suffocation or an event that prevents the lungs from absorbing a normal level of oxygen molecules.
Levels of brain and head injury
There are 3 levels of TBI injuries.
#1: Mild injury
A mild TBI may result in loss of consciousness for up to a few minutes. A loss of consciousness may not happen at all. Still, a victim may experience confusion and disorientation. Medical tests may indicate that the brain was not injured. However, not all mild TBIs will show up in imaging tests. A physician will closely examine a victim’s mental functioning to help diagnose a concussion or mild TBI.
#2: Moderate injury
A moderate brain injury may result in loss of consciousness for up to several hours. Confusion may last for several weeks. Complications of a moderate TBI could last for months or may be permanent. The complications can be behavioral, cognitive or physical. A victim will need many treatment programs to address such complications.
#3: Severe brain injury
The most severe brain injuries result from penetration of the skull and brain or crushing blows. This level of TBI is life-threatening. If a victim survives, he or she may not return to their normal life. Frequently, severe brain injury is one in which the skull has suffered serious damage.
Get help from an experienced Tampa brain injury lawyer
Brain injuries can be expensive to recover from (if you ever do) and your insurance company will want to spend as little as possible on the recovery. Don’t try to represent yourself when facing insurance claims. They can be complicated and time-consuming, and you’ve already been through enough.
If you or a loved one has sustained a traumatic brain injury from an accident, contact an attorney with experience in traumatic brain injury law. The skilled team at Lorenzo & Lorenzo is equipped and ready to fight for you.