Traumatic Brain Injury Attorneys In Long Island
A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, is a type of injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head. People with a TBI suffer damage to the brain, leading to dysfunction. TBIs commonly occur in car accidents. A person may not realize that they have a TBI immediately, as symptoms can take days or weeks to appear. If you were injured an accident due to someone else’s negligence and suffered a TBI, you may be able to recover damages for your injuries.
The Long Island traumatic brain injury attorneys at Parker Waichman LLP have decades of experience successfully representing clients in various personal injury lawsuits. Contact one of our lawyers today for a free, no-obligation legal consultation. We work on a contingency fee, meaning you only pay attorneys’ fees if we win your case.
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a TBI is “a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury.” The agency says that roughly 30 percent of all injury deaths involve TBIs, and 153 people in the country die each day from injuries that include TBI.
A TBI can cause various changes in brain function, including impaired thinking, movement, sensation (changes in vision or hearing) or problems with memory. A person with a TBI may also suffer from emotional effects, including changes in personality and depression.
A bump to the head does not necessarily mean that someone suffered a TBI. People with a TBI have impaired brain function, which can range in severity. Mild TBIs may only cause a temporary change in mental status or consciousness. Severe TBIs can cause long-lasting problems with consciousness or memory. A TBI may only last a few days, or produce problems lasting a lifetime. Concussions are a mild form of TBI; they account for most cases of TBI each year.
Signs and Symptoms of a TBI
A TBI may produce symptoms immediately after a blow to the head. Conversely, patients may start experiencing symptoms days or months after the injury. A person with a TBI may appear fine on the outside, but feel or act differently.
According to the CDC, signs and symptoms of a TBI include:
- Difficulty thinking clearly, concentrating or remembering new information
- Feeling slow, tired and lethargic
- Fuzzy or blurred vision
- Nausea or vomiting (early symptom)
- Sensitivity to light and noise
- Emotional changes (i.e. irritability, sad, more emotional, nervous)
- Sleeping more or less than usual, trouble falling asleep
The CDC warns that a concussion can produce a dangerous blood clot in rare cases, causing the brain to crowd against the skull.
Seek emergency medical care if the following symptoms occur after a head injury:
- Worsening headache that does not go away
- Slurred speech
- Repeated vomiting and nausea
- Decreased coordination
- Weakness, numbness
Rates of TBI in New York State and on Long Island
According to the New York State Department of Health, some 400 cases of TBI occur in the state each day. Annually, New York state sees 2,000 deaths, 19,000 hospitalizations and over 112,000 emergency department visits due to TBIs. TBIs are most commonly caused by motor vehicle accidents, falls and assaults. Young children, young adults, and the elderly are at greatest risk for a TBI. Males have nearly twice the risk of being hospitalized for a TBI compared to females.
The NYS Department of Health also provides TBI statistics by county. From 2012 to 2014, the mean annual frequency of TBI was 239 in Suffolk County and 162 in Nassau County. The mean annual frequency of hospitalizations for TBI was 1,826 for Suffolk County and 1,986 for Nassau County. Suffolk County had a mean annual frequency of 13,289 emergency department visits for TBI between 2012 and 2014 compared to 9,499 for Nassau.
What Types of Accidents Can Cause a TBI?
According to the CDC, falls were the top cause of TBIs in the United States in 2013. This is particularly a risk in older adults, who are more susceptible to falls. Among adults aged 65 years and older with a TBI, 79 percent were caused by falls. Falls also accounted for more than half of TBI cases in children ages 14 and under. In terms of personal injury litigation, a TBI may be an injury alleged in a slip and fall accident lawsuit or a nursing home negligence lawsuit.
The second leading cause of TBI in 2013 was being struck by or against an object, the CDC reports. This accounted for roughly 15 percent of TBI cases. Being involved in a construction site accident, for example, could easily lead to a TBI. A worker may be struck by falling debris or caught between heavy equipment.
Motor vehicle accidents were the third overall leading cause of TBI among all age groups. Victims of car accidents, motorcycle accidents, truck accidents and pedestrian accidents can easily sustain a TBI.
Suing for a TBI on Long Island
A TBI can lead to serious, long-lasting injuries. If you were injured from a Long Island accident resulting in a TBI, contact one of our experienced personal injury attorneys today.
If you suspect that you have suffered from a TBI, seek medical attention immediately and document the accident. Take plenty of photos if you can, ask someone else to do it if you cannot.
Damages for a TBI can be economic losses (“special damages”) or non-economic losses (general damages). Economic losses include medical expenses, lost earnings and property damage. In a wrongful death case, damages also include funeral and burial expenses. Non-economic losses include physical pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of consortium, emotional distress, humiliation, loss of reputation and loss of companionship.
Filing a Long Island Personal Injury Lawsuit
If you or someone you know is interested in filing a personal injury lawsuit involving an accident that occurred on Long Island, contact one of our Long Island accident attorneys today. Parker Waichman offers free, no-obligation case evaluations. For more information, fill out our online form or call 1-800-YOURLAWYER (1-800-968-7529).
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