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What to Do If You Get Facial Paralysis From a Personal Injury

Facial paralysis is a catastrophic injury that can have a devastating effect on you for the rest of your life. What should you do?

Riverside, California personal injury lawyers Heiting & Irwin have over four decades of experience assisting clients with catastrophic injuries such as facial paralysis. We have retrieved more than $400 million for our clients, and we’ll work hard to get you the settlement you deserve for your injury.  

What Is Facial Paralysis?

Facial paralysis occurs when you can’t move a portion of, or one or both sides of your face. It can occur if a dentist injects anesthesia close to or directly into a nerve and there is pressure on the nerve. It commonly happens to newborns at birth, or with a brain tumor, or from a stroke; but it can also occur because of a traumatic injury. For instance, one who gets into a car accident or a bicycle accident or suffers from a fall, you could experience facial paralysis.

This condition can either be temporary or permanent, and it may cause problems speaking, understanding language, and feeling different sensations. Some can struggle to say certain words, close their eyes, and chew their food. One may also not be able to taste food or produce saliva, or may hear things louder in one ear, and experience headaches. It can make day-to-day life a lot more challenging.

Treating Facial Nerve Damage

Facial paralysis can sometimes resolve on its own, so doctors may advise to wait to determine if it’s getting better. They might recommend an eye patch if one can’t close their eyes to assist in falling asleep, as well as give eye drops for dry eye. They may also prescribe steroids.

To treat facial paralysis that does not resolve quickly, facial reanimation surgery may be necessary. With surgery, a facial plastic surgeon, or other expert surgeon, will attempt to restore motion to the affected area of the face.

If the facial nerve is injured, then a doctor may be able to restore the lost nerve function by putting another nerve in that area. If this happens quickly after an injury, then it has a good chance, depending on a variety of factors, of course, to go well. However, if it’s been a year or more since the injury or illness that caused the paralysis happened, there may be more difficulty to restore nerve function.

A muscle transplantation surgery for facial paralysis will take around six to eight hours, and recovery in the hospital for three or four days, avoiding lifting or other strenuous activity and going to follow-up appointments to ensure healing.

What to Do After an Accident and Facial Paralysis Injury

After an accident, it’s imperative that you collect proof that supports your side of the story. For example, if you’re injured in a car crash, then take photographs of your car and the other person’s car and their license plate. Get in touch with the police to generate a police record of the incident, and collect witness statements from anybody who saw what occurred. Look around and see if there are video cameras that recorded the incident and note their locations.

If your injury was a result of something else, take photographs of your facial paralysis and gather witness statements from people who can attest to what happened. You’ll also need to assemble your medical records and write down anything you remember about what occurred when you got injured.

No matter what kind of accident you’re involved in, you must go to a doctor as soon as possible for examination and treatment. Whether they prescribe you medicine, advise you to wear an eye patch, or give or recommend to you some other kind of treatment, you need to follow their orders. If you don’t, it could hurt you and it could hurt your case.

If the defendant who is responsible for your injury or their insurance provider contacts you refer them to your lawyer. When you suffer from a catastrophic injury like facial paralysis, your medical bills and losses can run very high, and you’ll need as high of a settlement as possible to pay for them.

Possible Damages from a Facial Paralysis Injury

Along with your medical bills for things like appointments, medications, medical equipment, and surgery, you may also have to take a significant amount of time off work as part of your healing process. This means you’ll lose wages. You may also not be able to participate in your favorite hobbies or help out around the house or with your kids. Your partner could suffer because you aren’t able to engage with them like you used to. You may lose opportunities to advance or to get that dream job you have been planning for your whole life.

There is a variety of damages you could claim from a facial paralysis injury, but only an experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to calculate them for you and let you know what kind of compensation to seek from the defendant(s) or their insurance company.

Strict time limits apply.  It is vitally important you take immediate steps to hire an attorney and get them to work on your case. 

Get in Touch with Heiting & Irwin Today

If you were in an accident (of any type) and subsequently suffered from facial paralysis, then it’s time to find a personal injury lawyer to represent you. Heiting & Irwin are here for you. We have dealt with thousands of personal injury cases and will work hard to get you the settlement that you deserve. Contact us online or call us at 951-682-6400 to initiate your case.

Mr. Serrano has been admitted to practice before California State and Federal Courts. He was named to the Super Lawyers’ 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016 Southern California Rising Stars List, an honor awarded to no more than 2.5% of attorneys in Southern California each year. View Attorney Jean-Simon Serrano's Attorney Bio Here.

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