Many injuries can be life-threatening or leave lasting damage, and brain injuries are generally some of the most worrisome. Victims of brain injuries face countless possible complications, including cognitive impairment, lost motor function, increased susceptibility to future brain injuries, psychological effects, and many other possible issues.
Anyone who has suffered a brain injury in the Scottsdale area or anywhere else in Arizona should not have to deal with the effects of such an injury alone, especially if another party created the problem. Victims of brain injuries and their families can secure compensation for their losses through personal injury claims.
Types of Brain Injuries and Their Effects
Brain injuries happen in a variety of ways. One of the most common examples of a brain injury is a concussion. Concussions typically happen due to sudden force acting on the victim, causing his or her brain to shift inside the skull and strike the inside wall of the skull. Concussions can also result from intense shifts in momentum or traumatic blows to the head. They are one of the most common injuries in professional sports like football and ice hockey and entail a host of long-term issues.
Whenever a person suffers a concussion, he or she may experience several symptoms with varying intensity. Every person who suffers a concussion will be more susceptible to concussions in the future and may also experience nausea, dizziness, confusion, sensory complications, mood swings, irritability, migraines or cluster headaches, lethargy, difficulty focusing, and more. Impacts to the head and sudden momentum shifts often cause concussions, but they can also sometimes cause diffuse axonal injuries (tearing in the neural tissues due to twisting movements), contusions, or bleeding on the brain.
Brain injuries can also occur due to oxygen deprivation. This can happen due to drowning or during medical procedures that may inhibit the patient’s ability to transfer oxygen to the brain. Over time, oxygen deprivation can severely damage the brain and leave permanent impairments. Finally, the most severe brain injuries are penetrating wounds in which a foreign object enters the skull and damages the brain. Penetrating brain injuries are common in armed combat and as a result of interpersonal violence. Traumatic brain injuries caused by firearms are fatal in 91% of cases.
Damages in Brain Injury Cases
Brain injury lawsuits typically fall under the purview of personal injury law, meaning plaintiffs must prove their defendants’ negligence to win their cases. Proving negligence requires showing the court that the defendant had a duty to act with reasonable care during the events in question, breached or violated this duty of care in some way, and that this breach of duty directly led to the plaintiff’s injuries and damages.
Many victims of brain injuries may not be able to handle the legal process or may be in an unresponsive state. In these cases, a close family member may need to file the lawsuit on the victim’s behalf.
When a plaintiff wins his or her brain injury lawsuit, the compensation awarded may include:
- Medical expenses. This includes any and all fees and costs associated with treating the victim’s injury. It’s important to note that a plaintiff can only sue for the direct results of a defendant’s actions, which can include hospital bills, prescription costs, and any expenses related to ongoing treatment, such as rehabilitation or physical therapy.
- Pain and suffering. A judge will listen to expert witness testimony and award an appropriate figure for the physical pain and emotional anguish that the plaintiff suffered.
- Property damage. If the defendant’s actions damaged or destroyed any of the plaintiff’s personal property during the events in question, the plaintiff can recover the cost of repairing or replacing those items.
- Lost income. A brain injury may leave a plaintiff unable to return to work for an extended time or at all in some cases. The plaintiff may then sue for the wages he or she would have expected to earn in that time or in the future if the injury prevents him or her from returning to work.
Brain injuries are serious matters, and injured victims in Scottsdale and the rest of Arizona deserve reliable legal representation after enduring such an experience. Reach out to The Law Office of Chris Bode to schedule a consultation. We’ll review your brain injury case and let you know what type of compensation you might expect from a lawsuit.