The Kipness Law Firm, P.C

DALLAS BRAIN INJURY

Q: How common is a brain injury?

A: It is estimated that 1.4 million Americans suffer brain injuries each year.  Of this amount, 1.1 million Americans are treated at emergency rooms, 235,000 are admitted to hospitals; and 50, 000 die; and 30,000 cause permanent injury.

Q: What are the long term consequences of a brain injury?

A: 40% of people who are hospitalized with a brain injury have unmet need for services after their injury and 5.3 million Americans currently have long-term or lifelong need for help.

Q: What type of compensation can I recover for a brain injury?

A: You can recover your medical bills, lost wages, future medical care expenses, future loss of earning capacity damages, and compensation for pain, mental anguish, disfigurement, and impairment.

Q: Can brain injuries become symptomatic after being discharged from the hospital or doctor?

A: Yes.  Brain injuries can cause physical, emotional, and cognitive difficulties that manifest themselves after the person or child is discharged from the hospital or treating doctor.

Q: Is it necessary to have a skull fracture or skull bleeding to have a brain injury?

A: No.  A brain injury can occur without a skull fracture, skull bleeding, or loss of consciousness.

Q: What types of accidents can cause traumatic brain injuries?

A: Brain injuries can result from concussions, blows to the head, penetrations to the head, or lack of oxygen, loss of consciousness and be caused by almost any type of personal injury including:

Q: What are some signs and symptoms of brain injury?

A: Brain injuries can become symptomatic in physical, cognitive, and emotion changes of a person who sustains a brain injury.  A doctor should be seen immediately.

Q: What are the physical symptoms?

A: Physical symptoms include: diminished speech, nausea, vomiting, loss of balance, diminished hearing, blurred vision, lack of endurance, dizziness, severe headaches, unusual tiredness, weakness and numbness on one side of the body.

Q: What are the cognitive symptoms?

A: Cognitive symptoms include: confusion, inability to concentrate, perceive, plan, write, read, along with decreased orientation and short/long term memory loss.

Q: What are the behavioral symptoms?

A: Behavioral symptoms include: mood swings; frustration, anger, anxiety, depression; sexual dysfunction and agitation.  

Q: What type of help does one need to cope with a traumatic brain injury?

A: Individuals that suffer from a brain injury may need the following help: memory improvement help; problem solving help; temper control help; job skills help; anger management; and stress management.

Q: What types of changes can brain injuries cause?

A: Brain injuries can cause changes in: (1) thinking; (2) language: (3) learning; (4) emotions; (5) behavior; (6) sensation; and (7) learning.

Q: How many people need help because of brain injuries?

A: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate 5.3 million Americans are in need of long-term help because of brain injuries.

Q: How is a brain injury diagnosed?

A: Brain injuries can be diagnosed with diagnostic studies such as CT scan or MRI if the brain injury is severe.  In mild brain injuries, these diagnostic tests may not reveal a brain injury and PET scans or QEEG along with neuropsychological testing and standardized testing may be necessary to make a diagnosis.

Q: What is the prognosis of a brain injury?

A: Based on the Glasgow Coma Scale (GLS), brain injuries are categorized as: mild, moderate, and severe.  

Q: What are the symptoms of a minor brain injury?

A: A mild brain injury is manifested by at least one of the following symptoms: (1) loss of consciousness; (2) loss of memory for events immediately before or after the accident, or (3) alteration of in mental state at time of the accident.  These symptoms last less than 30 minutes and patients are typically scored 13-15 on the Glasgow Coma Scale.  Most individuals will not have major functional deficits but may experience long term headaches or cognitive and memory problems.

Q: What are the symptoms of a moderate brain injury?

A: A moderate brain injury is manifested by loss of consciousness and/or post traumatic amnesia longer than 30 minutes but less than 24 hours and is typically scored a 9-12 on the Glasgow Coma Scale.  Most individuals may have long-term physical or cognitive deficits and recovery will depend on the location of the brain injury.

Q: What are the symptoms of a severe brain injury?

A: A severe brain injury is manifested by loss of consciousness or post-traumatic amnesia for more than 24 hours and is typically scored lower than 9 on the Glasgow Coma Scale.  Most individuals will face with long-term physical and cognitive impairments, which will require extensive rehabilitation. These individuals may be in a vegetative state for the rest of their live.

Q: What if I was not diagnosed with a brain injury on the day of the accident or the first time I saw a doctor?

A: Brain injuries are difficult to diagnose and can be missed by trained professionals.  A brain injury may not be diagnosed until weeks after a personal injury accident.  

Q: If a person dies from a brain injury, can a claim still be pursued?

A: Yes, under a wrongful death statute a claim can be pursued by spouses, children, and parents of the deceased.

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