Raising Awareness of Brain Injuries in March

March 12, 2019

Brain injuries are among the most devastating injuries to humans, since the brain controls our ability to function in every area of life, from thought processes to breathing. The brain is delicate and sensitive; and although it is protected by the skull, it can damage easily.  When the brain is injured, any part of ability can be affected, and severe symptoms from paralysis to death may result.

According to the Brain Injury Association of America, (BIA) (https://www.biausa.org), over 1.5 million people face traumatic brain injuries (TBI) every year, and at least 50,000 individuals will die from their injury.  Approximately 80,000 will face life-long injuries and rehabilitative care from their injuries, and there are currently about 5 million Americans suffering from some form of TBI disability.

March is the month in which the BIA leads a nationwide Brain Injury Awareness Month Campaign and provides suggestions for activities to increase public awareness of the brain’s importance and the growing prevalence of traumatic brain injuries, as well as how to prevent them, and what can be done if they occur.  The BIA also tries to de-stigmatize brain injury.

Brain injuries affect the lives of not only the injured person, but their families as well. If you or a loved one suffered a brain injury that was caused by someone else’s negligence or wrongdoing, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses to help pay for medical bills, rehabilitation costs, and loss of life’s pleasures. However, every brain injury is unique, Pennsylvania personal injury law is complex, and your case must be handled correctly or you may never receive the settlement you deserve.

The experienced and compassionate Pennsylvania brain injury lawyers at Wapner Newman can assess your individual situation to see whether a lawsuit is appropriate and provide legal advice and guidance.  We offer a free consultation, so contact us online or call our offices today.

Symptoms of Brain Injury

Because the brain controls so many body functions, symptoms from brain injuries vary greatly depending on the area of the brain affected and the extent of damage.  Symptoms may occur immediately or take time to develop and may or may not improve over time.

When a brain injury occurs, the victim may experience …

  • Headaches
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Slurred speech
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Weakness or numbness in the extremities
  • Loss of coordination
  • Agitation
  • Emotional or behavioral problems
  • Seizures
  • Paralysis

If injuries are to the left side of the brain, there may be language, speech, logic and sequencing impairments, decreased control over the right side of the body, and emotional reactions such as depression and anxiety. 

If injuries are to the right side of the brain, there may be visual impairments, memory deficits, and problems controlling the left side of the body.

Severe brain injury may result in an unconscious state, or coma, resembling sleep but with absence of responsiveness.

How Brain Injuries Happen

Brain injury is often caused by a sudden, violent blow to the head or by anything that penetrates or fractures the skull.  Tissue damage may occur from destructive shock waves, from bone being pushed into the brain, or by forces which cause the brain to collide against the inside of the hard skull. Bruising of the brain (contusion) and bleeding (hemorrhage) cause injury in parts of the brain closest to the point of impact.

Common causes of brain injuries include …

  • motor vehicle accidents
  • slip and fall injuries
  • sports injuries
  • choking or obstruction of the airway
  • near-drowning
  • exposure to toxins
  • heart attacks, strokes, and aneurysm
  • electrical shock.

Brain injuries may also occur at birth through medical negligence or errors made by doctors, nurses, and hospitals, or other healthcare personnel.

Compensation for Brain Injuries

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury due to someone else’s negligence or fault, you may be entitled to compensation for economic damages for medical and rehabilitative expenses, lost past and future wages, and non-economic damages such as emotional distress, pain and suffering, and loss of life’s enjoyment.  However, proving negligence requires gathering and reviewing evidence such as medical records, interviewing witnesses, dealing with expert medical witnesses, and skillful representation in court.

Do not delay, as evidence may evaporate and there is a Pennsylvania statute of limitations for bringing a personal injury case. Contact Wapner Newman today to schedule your free initial consultation with an experienced and compassionate brain injury lawyer.