The brain serves as the body's computer, controlling everything we do and every single aspect of who we are. When this “computer” malfunctions due to a serious head injury or trauma, long-lasting impairments can result.
Brain injuries are some of the most severe injuries associated with personal injury accidents, as victims often require expensive and ongoing medical and assistive care. Fortunately, victims who suffered brain injuries in personal injury accidents caused by someone else's negligence may have grounds to pursue a claim for compensation in Kentucky's civil court system. If you're considering taking legal action for an accident-related brain injury, here's what you should know.
Common Types of Brain Injuries
- Concussions. Also known as mild traumatic brain injuries or MTBIs, concussions occur when the head sustains a direct hit or is exposed to sudden, forceful movement. These injuries often heal with rest and time, though victims should take care to avoid sustaining a second concussion before the first has fully healed, as multiple concussions can cause Repetitive Head Injury Syndrome.
- Contusions. Often caused by a direct blow to the head, contusions are best described as bruises or bleeding on the brain at the point of impact.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). The result of an external force that disrupts the brain's functions, TBIs can cause temporary or permanent physical, cognitive, communicative, and behavioral impairments.
- Coup-contrecoup injuries. Caused by a forceful blow to the head, these injuries are characterized by brain bleeds at the point of impact and on the opposite side of the brain where it bounced against the skull.
- Diffuse axonal injuries. Intentional shaking or the jolting and jostling conditions of a serious accident can cause the brain to slip around inside the skull, resulting in diffuse axonal injuries.
Accident-Related Brain Injury Causes
In order to understand why brain injuries are so closely related to personal injury accidents, it's important to understand just how brain injuries occur. Often, brain injuries are the direct result of a powerful blow or jolt to the head or body or a foreign object that penetrates the skull—disrupting the brain's abilities to perform its normal functions. The conditions ideal for causing brain injuries are common in many personal injury accidents, including:
- Auto accidents
- Truck accidents
- DUI accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Premises liability accidents
Brain Injuries Can Cause Significant Impairments
While some of the complications associated with moderate to severe brain injuries are often temporary—such as comas or amnesia—other impairments are long-lasting or even permanent. Common TBI-related impairments include:
- Cognitive deficits that affect attention, memory, and problem-solving abilities
- Motor function impairments that lead to poor coordination and balance, and weakness of the extremities
- Emotional and social deficits that result in personality changes, poor impulse control, anxiety, and depression
- Sensory impairments that affect vision, hearing, touch, and perception
Depending on the severity of these impairments, brain injury victims may require ongoing medical treatment, assistive care, home modifications, and more—the cost of which can quickly mount. According to Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine, the estimated lifetime treatment costs for a brain injury can range from $85,000 to $3 million.
Consult a Knowledgeable Personal Injury Attorney About Your Brain Injury Case
If you or someone you love sustained a brain injury in a personal injury accident caused by another person or entity's negligence, our experienced Kentucky attorneys can help you fight for compensation for damages such as medical expenses, property damages, lost wages, loss of income, pain and suffering, permanent disability, and more. Contact us today to request a free initial consultation to discuss the details of your brain injury case with a member of our skilled legal team, and we'll be in touch within 24 hours to schedule your appointment. Let our attorneys help you understand your rights and options for compensation, and take the hassle and guesswork out of navigating the personal injury litigation system.