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Brain Injury Symptoms After a Car Accident

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Brain Injury Symptoms After a Car Accident


The Centers for Disease Control estimate that 1.5 million Americans suffer a traumatic brain injury each year. The top causes of those injuries are motor vehicle crashes, violence, and falls (primarily among the elderly). An experienced injury lawyer may help people who have been involved in any of these situations.

The CDC further notes that this annual rate of brain injury also results in approximately:

  • 230,000 hospitalizations.
  • 50,000 deaths.
  • 80,000 more permanent or long-term disabilities.

A severe brain injury can have a devastating effect on your future and your finances. If you or a family member has suffered a traumatic brain injury in an accident that was not your fault, you may be entitled to monetary compensation for your injury. This compensation can be for damages such as:

  • Past and future medical bills.
  • Past and future loss of income.
  • Pain and suffering for the physical injury and past and ongoing symptoms.
  • Loss of consortium for a spouse whose husband or wife has been seriously injured.
Head Trauma in Car Accidents

A great many of these people suffer head trauma as a result of car accidents — it’s far and away from the largest single cause of brain injuries in America. Many people don’t know that it doesn’t take a major crash to cause a brain injury. Nor does a head injury require an impact with an object such as the steering wheel, dashboard, or windshield. At even relatively slow rates of speed, traumatic brain injuries can and often do occur.

If you are involved in a car crash, you and those around you must be aware and mindful of head and brain injury symptoms because if not recognized and treated quickly, such an injury could have dire long-term effects. Seeking immediate medical care for brain injury symptoms is crucial. Consulting promptly with an experienced personal injury can help achieve appropriate compensation for a brain injury, even a mild one. A personal injury attorney can assist with verifying liability and insurance coverage for the auto accident, filing and resolving the appropriate insurance claims, or, if necessary, filing and successfully litigating a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible defendants.

Head Trauma from Violence

Violent events that can result in traumatic brain injuries most often involve either gunshots or direct physical assaults. A gunshot wound that penetrates the skull obviously can cause pervasive, severe damage, which — if it does not lead to immediate death — is likely to cause serious and permanent deficits. However, even a gunshot wound that does not penetrate the skull, such as a grazing or ricochet wound, can still cause significant brain injury and residual symptoms due to the force of impact from the bullet.  Physical assaults resulting in traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can either come from blows to the head with fists or blunt objects or by being knocked over and striking the ground or separate hard objects. Depending on the severity of the injury, these TBIs from assaults may cause minor, major, or even fatal results.

Personal injury attorneys may be able to assist with head traumas resulting from violence in situations where the injury incident occurred on premises where an owner, landlord, or business operator may have failed to provide adequate security for guests on the premises or have taken actions that directly led to the violent incident. Examples would include:

  • Shopping malls that have had gang or teen violence incidents but have not taken adequate security measures to protect against repeat incidents.
  • Bars and restaurants that do not properly control unruly patrons or which continue to provide additional alcohol to patrons who are clearly intoxicated.

In these situations of premises liability resulting from either inadequate security or direct actions by the proprietors, a personal injury attorney may assert an insurance claim or lawsuit on behalf of the injury victim.

Head Trauma from Falls

Experienced injury attorneys can help victims of head trauma resulting from slip or trip-and-fall injuries achieve proper compensation for their injuries in different ways depending upon the circumstances of the fall. Commonly, these incidents are either falls caused by some defect in the premises — slippery footing, an uneven walking surface, unsafe stairs — that the property owner or manager knew or should have known about and corrected, or often they occur in the elderly in settings such as hospitals, nursing homes, and retirement communities when facility staff doesn’t take appropriate care for the victims. These personal injury cases are typically pursued as either premises liability claims, negligence claims, or sometimes even as elder abuse cases — an experienced personal injury attorney can assist in all these categories.

Brain Bleeds and Potential Damage

Different injury processes damage the brain, including bruising, bleeding, or tearing, any of which can also result in tissue swelling. For example, if an individual is injured in a car crash that involves sudden and violent forces, such as a head-on impact, broadside impact, or rear-end collision that causes a quick and sudden stop or change in direction, the brain’s soft tissue impacts against the hard bone of the inner skull. As a result, the brain tissue is squashed against the bone of the skull, and blood vessels may rupture, and the tissue may be bruised or torn. When larger blood vessels burst and tear, they release blood into sections of the brain uncontrolled and unusual manner. A flood of blood within the brain causes injury and often various short and long-term detrimental cognitive symptoms.

Brain Bleed After a Car Accident

The major problem of a flood of blood caused by a tear or rupture of the brain tissue and blood vessels is that there is no room for this extra blood. The skull — being bone — is incapable of expanding, so the blood begins to press on other areas such as the softer brain tissue. Brain tissue is very delicate and will malfunction, stop working altogether, and even die off if pressured. With excessive amounts of bleeding in the brain, the additional pressure can make critical areas of the brain stop working. Areas that control such vital functioning such as breathing or heart rate can be damaged and lead to death. Still, even less severe or even relatively minor “brain bleeds” can lead to permanent and serious deficits.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of a Brain Bleed?

Someone involved in an auto accident could seem perfectly normal immediately after a crash. Still, as the internal brain bleeding progressives and worsens, a life-or-death situation could develop, literally within minutes or hours. Common brain bleed symptoms include confusion, nausea, or headache. If you or a family member experiences these brain bleed symptoms from a head injury after involvement in a traumatic accident, seek immediate treatment from a medical professional.

The educational video below provides information on how to manage symptoms of a mild traumatic brain injury:

Sacramento Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

Hello, I’m Ed Smith, and I am a Sacramento Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney. If you or a loved one has suffered brain trauma from incidents such as a car accident, slip-and-fall incident, violent incident, or other situation that was due to another person’s fault, call our attorneys for free, friendly advice at (916) 921-6400 or (800) 404-5400. You can also reach us through our online contact formOur injury lawyers will fight to get you the settlement you deserve.

We are members of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum and the National Association of Distinguished Counsel.

See our case history of verdicts and settlements and our client reviews on Google, Yelp, and Avvo.

Photo Attribution:  Image by VSRao from Pixabay

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