Brain Injury

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Brain Injuries, Traumatic Brain Injury, Catastrophic Brain Injury

A Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. Unlike other injuries, brain injuries are often permanent and disabling.

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Facts:

  • 1.7 million people, including 475,000 children, sustain a TBI in the U.S. each year.
  • 3.1 million individuals live with a life-long disability as a result of a TBI.
  • 52,000 people will die because of a TBI.
  • 275,000 people will be hospitalized with TBI.
  • 1.365 million people will be treated and released from an emergency department for TBI.
  • TBIs are caused by falls (35%), car crashes (17%), workplace accidents (16%), assaults (10%), and other accidents (12%).
  • TBI is a contributing factor to a third (30.5%) of all injury-related deaths in the U.S.
  • About 75% of TBIs that occur each year are concussions or other forms of mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI).

 

Young children and the elderly are at most risk of TBIs. The leading causes of TBI continue to be falls, motor vehicle crashes (car, truck, motorcycle), and assaults. The violent shaking of an infant or toddler (shaken baby syndrome) is a leading cause of serious brain injury in young children. Other TBI can occur due to medical malpractice and negligence (birth delivery, drug use). Open head injury, closed head injury, deceleration injuries, chemical/toxic, hypoxia, anoxia, tumors, infections, and strokes are also common causes of brain injuries.

Reduce Your Risk of TBI:

Automobile Accidents – Choose a car, truck, or SUV with a good crash test safety rating and properly maintain your vehicle. Check your tires regularly and replace as needed. Wear your seatbelt and make sure that children are properly restrained (child safety seat, booster seat). Follow all traffic safety rules (speed limit, traffic signs) and be aware of inclement weather conditions and road construction. Also eliminate driver distractions (texting and driving, talking on cell phone, eating while driving) and never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Gun/Firearm Shootings – Children and teenagers are curious and adventurous, which can lead to accidental shootings if proper safety measures are not taken. Every day, approximately five children are injured or killed on a nationwide basis as a result of handguns. Adults with firearms should keep all firearms stored unloaded in a locked cabinet or safe and they should store bullets in a separate secure location.

Slip and Fall Accidents – Remove tripping hazards such as small area rugs and loose electrical cords. Ensure handrails are in place and in working order. Where appropriate, install window guards or child safety gates. Use non-slip mats in bathroom near toilet, shower, and tub areas and install grab bars for easy entrance and exit. Use an appropriate ladder for reaching items up high. Be aware of weather conditions, uneven curbs, and construction areas. Wear appropriate footwear for your activity (shoes, sneakers, flip-flops).

Sports-Related Accidents – Concussions are the most common brain injuries and are often the result of a hit or fall that causes temporary brain function problems (headache, loss of consciousness, and seizures). Medical professionals refer to concussions as mildly traumatic brain injury (MTBI). Using the proper protective equipment is the best way to prevent these. Helmets should be worn for any contact or risky sport (football, hockey, lacrosse, baseball, biking, skateboarding, and horseback riding).

Recreation Accidents – Make sure children’s playground equipment (swing set, slide, bounce house, trampoline) is not broken or outdated and properly maintained (use mulch and sand instead of concrete). Ensure that swimming pools have the necessary fencing and alarm systems. Make sure recreational activities are age appropriate (ATV’s, jet skis, parasailing) and that the appropriate safety equipment is used. Never leave young children alone at play; always make sure there is proper adult supervision.

Choking and Strangling – Choking can cause brain damage from lack of oxygen to the brain. People should watch what they eat, especially young kids. Children under three should avoid foods like hot dogs, grapes, and hard candy and they should not play with toys that have small, removable parts.

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) or any form of brain or head damage in a loved one can place a family under tremendous financial and emotion stress. TBIs are often devastating and have far-reaching implications for readjustment to daily living and rehabilitation. In some cases, long-term or indefinite care is required for injuries too severe for a full recovery.

If you or a loved one has experienced a head or brain injury due to the negligence or criminal action of someone else, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, medical bills, home health care, attendant care, special support for the family (counseling), rehabilitation (physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, vocational rehabilitation), and pain and suffering.

If you would like to discuss a potential claim involving a traumatic brain injury or head injury, please contact the experienced Florida personal injury attorneys at Baker & Zimmerman by calling us at 800-886-LAWS for a free consultation. We only charge you if we win your case.

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