Approximately 1.4 million individuals in the United States suffer traumatic brain injury every single year. A traumatic brain injury is usually diagnosed after a significant blow to the head that leads to severe to mild brain dysfunction and associated complications. Unfortunately, many individuals who are diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury will pass away as a result. If you or someone you know has suffered a brain injury, contact a brain injury lawyer immediately following an accident in San Diego 619-338-8230 or North County 760-308-0041.
Brain injuries are a real problem, nearly 50,000 individuals die every single year from injuries associated with a brain injury and a further 80,000 are left to cope with disabilities that will impact them for the remainder of their life. While these injuries might initially appear minor due to the fact that skull protects the brain, there are many other brain injuries that lead to critical medical care and hospitalization. Our brain injury lawyers have handled many claims throughout San Diego and are dedicated to making sure you receive fair compensation for your injury. Legal help for victims of brain injuries are some of the least well-understood and most complicated medical conditions out there. There are two primary categories used to classify brain injuries; penetrating or closed. There could be several deficits associated with the injury that your brain has sustained.
- Cognitive problems
- Changes in personality
- Loss of smell
- Hearing loss
A brain injury can dramatically change the life of a patient who had normal function prior to the accident. It can be difficult for friends and family members to watch someone who was previously so healthy suffering the devastating impacts of a brain injury. Getting help from a knowledgeable brain injury attorney is strongly recommended for any individual who finds himself in this situation. While it is not always possible to get your life back to the way it was prior to the accident, an experienced attorney can help you evaluate the severity of your claim and determine your next steps. Having a lawyer who cares significantly about you and your future can be extremely beneficial in this situation and should not be overlooked. It can be a major adjustment for friend’s family and the victim to adjust to life after a critical accident. The only way you may be eligible to receive the appropriate treatment going forward and to recover as much as possible from this injury is to file a claim immediately. Common causes of brain injuries can occur as a result of any accident. Some accidents are more common than others.
- Being struck by an object
- Work injuries
- Slip and falls
- Vehicle accidents
- Hitting your head against a hard surface
One of the most challenging aspects of a brain injury is that you might not notice the symptoms immediately. It can even be difficult for physicians in the hospital to diagnose a brain injury appropriately. Since this medical condition is still being studied in depth, it is not always easy for doctors to identify when someone has sustained a brain injury. It can even take weeks or months to properly diagnose the condition. Unfortunately, some victims are sent into a coma immediately which can generate its own set of problems. Every brain injury patient’s life and situation will be unique. Outcomes can vary tremendously across the spectrum. This is part of what makes it difficult to adjust to life after the injury. In many cases, you may not be able to ever return to your job again. Consulting with a knowledgeable brain injury lawyer will help to make this difficult transition that much easier. Working with an experienced brain injury attorney who will fight hard for the compensation that you deserve can help to relieve stress and empower you to feel better about the future. Unfortunately, these accidents happen all too common and when they are the result of someone else’s negligence they are completely preventable. Call for a Free Case Consultation Today 619-338-8230.
The only thing that you can do to empower yourself is to work with a committed law firm. Our law firm only accepts cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning that we do not get paid unless we win. We work hard to advocate for your rights and the best options for you moving forward. Make sure you work with a law firm you trust. If you or someone you know has sustained a brain injury, call a brain injury lawyer at Injury Law Center today for a free consultation 619-338-8230. Find out how our attorneys can help you.
Traumatic Brain Injuries Symptoms
The brain is an incredibly intricate system of circuits, nerves and tissue that continues to occupy the sole focus of countless professionals around the world on a daily basis. While we have come a long way in terms of recognizing the warning signs of a traumatic brain injury and diagnosing the problem, we still have a lot of work to do. One of the central focuses of the medical science community in recent years has been diagnosing traumatic brain injuries. Clearly, that all starts with understanding brain injury symptoms. There are nearly as many brain trauma symptoms as there are parts of the brain. Below you’ll find information regarding different approaches used to diagnose traumatic brain injuries and to measure their severity. You will also find examples of traumatic brain injury symptoms for each degree of severity.
Systems for Diagnosing Traumatic Brain Injuries
Over the years, different medical professionals have come up with different systems that they use to diagnose traumatic brain injury symptoms. Below are a few examples of these diagnostic approaches.
The Glasgow Coma Scale
- No response – 1 point
- Extensor response – 2 points
- Abnormal flexion – 3 points
- Withdraws from noxious stimuli – 4 points
- Localizes to noxious stimuli – 5 points
- Obeys commands fully – 6 points
- No sounds – 1 point
- Incomprehensible sounds – 2 points
- Nonsensical verbalization – 3 points
- Confused but relatively coherent speaking – 4 points
- Alert speaking – 5 points
- No eye opening – 1 point
- Eyes open in response to pain – 2 points
- Eyes open in response to speech – 3 points
- Spontaneous opening of the eyes – 4 points
Total points from the three categories are added together. The following ranges determine the severity of the traumatic brain injury:
- If a patient scores between 13 and 15 points, he or she is deemed to have suffered a mild injury.
- If the patient scores between 9 and 12 points, he or she has suffered a moderate brain injury.
- 3 to 8 points means the patient has suffered a severe brain injury and is in an unconscious state.
- If a patient scores fewer than 3 points, he or she is deemed to be in a vegetative state.
The Rancho Los Amigos Scale
The Rancho Los Amigos Scale was formulated in 1972 by doctors at the Rancho Los Amigos Hospital. This scale measures several different factors with the patient, but unlike the GCS there is no total score involved.
Instead, the patient is observed and assigned to one of the following levels:
- Level I – No Response/Total Assistance
- Level II – Generalized Response/Total Assistance
- Level III – Localized Response/Total Assistance
- Level IV – Confused/Agitated/Maximal Assistance
- Level V – Confused, Inappropriate Non-Agitated/ Maximal Assistance
- Level VI – Confused, Appropriate/ Moderate Assistance
- Level VII – Automatic, Appropriate/Minimal Assistance for Daily Living
- Level VIII – Purposeful, Appropriate/Stand-By Assistance
- Level IX – Purposeful, Appropriate/Stand-By Assistance When Needed
- Level X – Purposeful, Appropriate/Modified Independent
There are other scales that are used, but these are the two most prevalent in the medical community.
Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms – Different Degrees of Severity
Brain injury symptoms will depend somewhat on the degree of severity of the injury that was suffered. As you’ll see below, some of the symptoms for different degrees of traumatic brain injuries overlap. Medical science defines the different levels of traumatic brain injuries as described below.
Mild – A loss of consciousness of fewer than 20 minutes. Examples of symptoms associated with a mild traumatic brain injury:
- Lack of awareness of surrounding environment
- Ringing in the ears
- Intolerance of loud noises
Moderate – A loss of consciousness that lasts between 20 minutes and 6 hours. Common examples of moderate traumatic brain injuries:
- Persistent, worsening headache
- Persistent nausea and/or vomiting
- Dilation of the pupils
- Fluids draining from nose or ears
- Inability to wake up
Severe – A loss of consciousness that lasts more than 6 hours. Common symptoms of severe traumatic brain injuries include:
- Extended period of unconsciousness
- Amnesia after regaining consciousness
- Impaired attention span
- Impaired memory
- Weakness in the extremities
- Impaired coordination
As stated above, it is nearly impossible to categorize brain trauma symptoms in almost any way. The above examples serve only as reference points for people who may have suffered a traumatic brain injury or their loved ones who are concerned about what could have happened.
The Uncertainty of Brain Injury Symptoms
Aside from the fact that traumatic brain injury symptoms vary widely on an individual basis in the immediate aftermath of the incident that caused the harm, there are perhaps two larger uncertainties regarding traumatic brain injury symptoms: how long they last and whether or not they are going to change. These uncertainties only make things more difficult for the brain injury survivor and his or her support group. In addition, the fact that brain trauma symptoms are so unpredictable adds to the stress that patients and their support networks experience.
It’s both fortunate and unfortunate that we are still learning about the long-term effects of a traumatic brain injury and how such an injury will affect a person one year, five years, 10 years or longer after he or she survives the initial harm. Patients need to understand that this uncertainty is likely going to be a part of his or her recovery. Families and friends of the patients need to be ready to exercise patience, empathy and at least a general understanding that many of these symptoms are beyond that patient’s control.
How Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyers Help Alleviate Uncertainty
The duration and particulars of traumatic brain injury symptoms are obviously problematic for everyone involved in the recovery process. Financial uncertainty can also be extremely stressful. It is not uncommon for someone who suffers head trauma to face forms of loss:
- Immediate medical expenses
- Future medical expenses
- Immediate loss of income
- Future loss of income
- Loss of quality of life
- Loss of companionship
These losses can quickly climb into the hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars. Most people cannot simply absorb those losses without encountering some type of financial stress. Traumatic brain injury lawyers who have earned a strong track record of results for clients understand that it takes to hold those responsible for these losses accountable. Injury Law Center has been doing just that for over a decade. Our brain injury attorneys are uniquely qualified to handle these matters based on both professional and personal experiences. If you or someone you love has suffered a traumatic brain injury because of the actions of someone else, contact us as soon as possible to schedule a free initial consultation 619-338-8230.