Fredericksburg Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Lawyers
In Virginia, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) cause approximately one-third of all injury-related fatalities annually and approximately 15 percent of all injury-related inpatient, acute care hospitalizations. In 2014, 1,565 Virginians died as a result of complications from TBIs. Nationwide, over 2.5 million catastrophic brain injuries occur each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and about 153 people die in the United States from TBI-related injuries every day.
TBIs run the gamut of complications, from mild concussions on one end to permanent disability and even death on the other. No two TBI cases are exactly alike, because of the complexity of the human brain and the wide range of causes of TBI, including bumps, blows, or jolts to the head, oxygen deprivation, and penetrating trauma. Concussions and other types of TBI are especially on the rise in children, most of them due to blows to the head sustained during sports or recreational activities. Older Americans also face a significant risk of TBI.
No matter your age, however, a TBI can happen to you, and when it does the consequences can have long-lasting negative effects on your life. At Emroch & Kilduff, we understand the difficulties associated with living with a TBI, and aim to help victims (and their families) recover the money they require for therapy and long-term care. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced lawyers. You can reach us at (804) 358-1568.
How Traumatic Brain Injuries Happen
TBIs happen from a wide variety of accidents and incidents that cause the brain to move around inside the skull, or inflict acute damage on the structure of the brain. Many people suffer TBIs in motor vehicle accidents, but that is far from the only way they happen. Other common causes of TBI, according to the CDC, include:
- Slip and falls
- Construction site accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Sports-related injuries
- Workplace accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Physical violence
- Boating accidents
- Neglect, such as shaken baby syndrome
- Product negligence
Categories of TBI
TBI affects victims in various ways, depending on the circumstances and severity of the injury. Common symptoms include experience confusion, nausea, and a loss of consciousness, but one of the things that make TBI so dangerous is that not everyone experiences these symptoms, and some symptoms take time to appear. What’s more, the signs of TBI can be subtle, and children and older people sometimes have difficulty describing them in a way that causes a caregiver to suspect at TBI. That is why it is always important to seek medical attention after sustaining any kind of head trauma, even blows to the head that make a person feel “out of it” for just a second or two.
Any kind of head trauma can lead to conditions that cause damage to brain tissue. These include:
A blood clot outside of the blood vessels of the brain that collects inside the skull.
Uncontrolled bleeding on or in the brain.
Damage to the brain resulting from the brain rotating within or impacting the inside of the skull. These movements can cause bleeding, bruising, and swelling, leading to damage to brain tissue. Recently, researchers have expressed concern about the prevalence of concussions in sports.
Swelling of the brain that becomes dangerous when causes high pressure within the skull, resulting in damage to brain tissue.
A break in the cranial bone (the skull) that results in damage to brain tissue from any combination of swelling, bleeding, or physical injury from the break (which usually only happens when the head takes a sharp blow).
Diffuse axonal injury
Lesions in multiple areas of the brain that interfere with the functioning of brain cells, and can lead to severe health complications and death.
Warning Signs of a Traumatic Brain Injury
It’s not always easy to tell that someone has suffered a TBI. But, here are some symptoms to look out for when you know someone has taken a jolt, blow, or other impact to the head.
- Problems with dizziness or balance
- Frequent head or neck pain
- Vision problems, hearing problems, or sensitivity to light
- Difficulty in thinking, speaking, concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
- Exhaustion, or lack of energy and motivation
- Disturbed sleep patterns
- Unexplained mood changes
How Doctors Treat TBIs
There is a range of treatments for TBI depending on when the injury happened, its severity, and the duration of its effects. Medication and surgery may be used immediately after a blow to the head to limit damage to the brain. Rest and limitation of activities also usually plays a role. Longer-term, TBI victims may need physical, occupational, and mental health therapy as part of their treatment plan. With an especially severe injury, a person with a TBI may need direct support from a caregiver in daily life.
What to Do if You Suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury
First, seek medical care for any head injury, even one you think is just a minor “bump.” Research increasingly suggests even minor brain injuries can create risk factors for future ones, so it’s important to monitor even the slightest concussion and make sure it’s part of your medical history, even if a doctor does not prescribe any special medical intervention.
If a TBI leaves you with long-term impairments, you may have a right to seek damages from anyone who caused the TBI through dangerous or careless behavior. An experienced brain injury attorney can help you determine if you have a claim. If you do, then some of the damages you may have the right to recover include:
- Hospitalization costs
- Ambulance costs
- Rehabilitation expenses
- Surgery costs
- Lost income
- Diminished earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
Contact Emroch & Kilduff’s Fredericksburg TBI Lawyers Today
Under Virginia law, you typically have only two years from the date of an accident that leaves you with a TBI to take legal action for damages. So, it’s often important to talk to a lawyer right away. The experienced brain injury team at Emroch & Kilduff can help evaluate your case and advise whether you have a claim for damages. Call us today at (804) 358-1568, or contact us online to schedule a free consultation and case review.