Brain Injuries and Lifelong Treatment
If someone you love was in a catastrophic accident, they may have suffered a form of brain injury. Now it’s taking a devastating toll on their quality of life – as well as your own –and you feel like you have nowhere to turn for help. You want to make sure that they are taken care of physically, emotionally, mentally, and that they can go forward with their life and be as happy and healthy as possible in a very tough situation.
By taking legal action, or helping them take legal action, you may able to achieve the compensation that you and your loved one deserve. First, there are some things to learn about brain injuries, treatment, and costs to determine what steps you want to take.
What Is a Brain Injury?
A brain injury is an injury that happens after birth and is not caused by a congenital, hereditary, or degenerative issue. There are two types of brain injuries, traumatic brain injury and acquired brain injury, and both cause a shift in the neuronal activity in the brain.
A traumatic brain injury occurs as a result of an external factor like a blow to the head. For instance, your loved one may have bumped their head or experienced a blow or jolt. They may have fallen, been assaulted, gotten into a car crash, suffered a gunshot, fallen, hit their head somehow, or gotten injured in the workplace. This type of injury will range from mild (like a simple concussion), to severe (with very severe impairment and consequences), and it can be either the result of a closed blow (where it doesn’t penetrate) or open (where it does penetrate).
An acquired brain injury is a change in pathology or brain functioning that is caused by factors other than a direct impact such as like not having enough oxygen during birth or during a surgical procedure or as a result of improper and ineffective CPR. An “ABI” may have also occurred if your loved one got an electric shock, had toxic exposure, has a metabolic disorder, or was exposed to carbon monoxide, lead poisoning, or other diseases or conditions.
What Happens After a Brain Injury?
Depending on the type and severity of the brain injury, a number of different changes may occur. Impairment of cognitive and physical abilities, behaviors, and emotions are common.
A brain injury patient may not be able to process information, or as fast as they could before, remember things, concentrate, organize their thoughts, or properly judge situations. They may have mood swings, get agitated easily, feel anxious, become impulsive, and suffer from depression, or even experience Alzheimer’s, epilepsies, or Parkinson’s. They may also have seizures or become paralyzed and be unable to use their limbs, speech, or other faculties properly.
Brain Injury Treatment
Brain injury treatment will vary based on the type of injury your loved one has. They may go through some rehabilitation for their loss of memory, attention, and speech, therapy for mental disorders, and physical therapy to help them function as much as possible.
Your loved one may have to meet with professionals like psychotherapists, physical therapists, social workers, recreational therapists, occupational therapists, physiatrists, rehabilitation nurses, and vocational counselors throughout their lifetime.
They may need surgery to remove continual sources of injury (bleeding) or to improve functioning. Additionally, they might have to take medications, get essential medical equipment, and need home and vehicle repairs and changes to improve function in their everyday life.
You and your loved one may well benefit from joining a support group, following a schedule every day, having an aid or family member help, have daily nursing help, and getting special accommodations for home, travel, and even work, if they are still able to work at all.
Costs for a Brain Injury
Brain injury treatment over the course of a lifetime can range in the millions of dollars. The cost is dependent on the type of injury and how serious it is. While insurance may cover some of these costs, others may not; and sources will have to be found to contribute at least a portion of the money for the lifetime treatment the brain injury will require.
Another factor is the loss of income and overall support from your loved one. If they can no longer work and contribute to the bills or household care and maintenance, and the other things they normally would do, costs will be much higher, especially if they were many years away from retiring. To compute losses we will also have to look at the potential raises, bonuses, and benefits they could have received had they continued to work.
It’s hard to put it into numbers, but factoring in the physical, mental, and emotional support a loved one provided prior to the brain injury must be considered. Endless lists of things such as the ability to hold their children, prepare school lunches, help dress them and take them to school, participate in sports and general activities, help with homework, attend functions, coach them, counsel them, love them, or perform the wide array of activities they were doing before, factor into the picture.
Additionally, you have to consider the time off you take to help your loved one, and the income you lose. Once you calculate all these costs and factors, you could easily be looking at millions of dollars in losses.
Getting Legal Help for a Brain Injury
You may be worried because you don’t know how you’re going to pay for the treatment, take care of your loved one, and cope with all the new challenges you face. Thankfully, the light at the end of the tunnel is that an experienced catastrophic injury lawyer can help you.
They will be able to give you some peace of mind during this tumultuous time. Your job will be to focus on being there for your loved one and other family members.
With a catastrophic injury lawyer on your side, you can rest your mind and get the help you need.
Contact a Catastrophic Injury Lawyer
If you’re ready to pursue your catastrophic injury claim for your loved one with a brain injury, then call the personal injury attorneys at Heiting & Irwin at 951-682-6400, or contact our office online to schedule a free consultation as soon as possible. Do not delay. We can get you what you need and what you deserve in your catastrophic injury case.