checking an xray for injury

Car accidents frequently result in severe injuries. One of the most severe injuries from a car crash is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). A TBI can have painful, life-altering consequences and may cause permanent disability. TBI patients may have trouble working, caring for themselves, or supporting dependents.

If you or someone close to you suffered a TBI due to a car accident, you could be entitled to compensation for your losses. The Decatur TBI attorneys at the law firm of Morris, King & Hodge, P.C. understand how devastating a TBI can be for accident victims. We’re committed to fighting for justice and fair compensation on your behalf.

Contact us today for a free consultation to learn more about your legal options and how our car accident attorneys can build a strong case for you.

What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?

A TBI is a brain injury caused by violent blows, jolts, or penetrative trauma to the head. Traumatic brain injuries are problematic because they can affect how the brain functions, sometimes for the rest of a person’s life.

Anyone can suffer a TBI, but according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), these injuries are especially prevalent among children and older adults. Males also tend to have significantly higher rates of TBI-related hospitalizations than females, adjusted for both age and unintentional or intentional factors contributing to a TBI.

How TBIs Result from Car Accidents in Decatur, AL

Motor vehicle accidents are the second-most common cause of TBI-related hospitalizations in the United States. More than 220,000 TBI-related hospitalizations occur each year, and roughly 25 percent of them result from car accidents.

The physics of a collision between two motor vehicles traveling at speed creates conditions that make TBIs especially likely. Depending on the speed of the vehicles involved, the force of impact can be immense. A vehicle occupant can sustain TBIs when they strike their head against hard surfaces, sustain blows to the head from flying or falling objects, or suffer penetrative head wounds from sharp projectiles.

Types of Brain Injuries from Car Accidents in Decatur

Car accidents may result in the following common types of TBIs:

  • Concussions – Concussions are the most common and often least severe form of TBI. Many concussions result from forceful blows to the head. Concussion patients may briefly lose consciousness or may remain unconscious after the initial impact.
  • Contusions – Blunt-force trauma or violent jolts to the head can lead to contusions, which are internal bruises that occur when soft brain tissue collides with the rigid interior of the skull. Contusions cause bleeding at the injury site, which can put pressure on the brain and impair cognitive function.
  • Diffuse axonal injuries – When car accidents result in violent acceleration and deceleration of the head, shearing forces can tear nerve fibers called axons. These axons transmit important nerve signals, so a diffuse axonal injury can severely disrupt communication within the brain.
  • Coup-contrecoup injuries – In a coup-contrecoup injury, a blunt force to one side of the head causes the brain to strike the interior of the skull on the opposite side, resulting in injuries to both sides of the brain.
  • Penetrative head injuries – Penetrative head injuries occur when glass, vehicle fragments, or other blunt objects pierce the skull. Penetrative head injuries may result in direct trauma to the brain’s soft tissue and can be deadly.

Signs and Symptoms of Brain Injury After a Car Crash

The effects of a TBI may look very different depending on the severity and location of the injury. Common signs and symptoms of these catastrophic injuries after auto accidents include:

  • Short-term or long-term memory loss
  • Confusion and difficulty concentrating or paying attention
  • Difficulty remembering words or expressing thoughts
  • Impaired judgment or thinking ability
  • Fatigue and sleep difficulties
  • Blurred vision and loss of balance
  • Dizziness, nausea, and vomiting
  • Difficulty tasting or smelling
  • Weakness affecting one side of the body
  • Mood swings, flat emotions, and depression
  • Sexual dysfunction
  • Seizures

Treatment for Traumatic Brain Injuries

The recommended treatment for a traumatic brain injury depends on the type, severity, and location of the injury. For example, some less severe TBIs may require minimal treatment. Some TBI patients recover with rest and over-the-counter (OTC) pain relief drugs.

When patients suffer a moderate to severe TBI with more serious trauma, more extensive care is needed. In many cases, doctors must administer emergency care to ensure TBI patients have adequate blood and oxygen flow and prevent further injury. Patients may need anti-seizure drugs or even drugs that induce temporary comas to keep them stable in the short term.

In severe cases, doctors may recommend surgery to repair fractured skulls, stop intracranial bleeding, or remove blood clots. Many severe TBI patients also require long-term rehabilitation treatment from specialists such as psychologists, speech therapists, and vocational counselors.

Recovering From a Traumatic Brain Injury

After TBI patients are stabilized and no longer require acute care, some make partial or complete recoveries of their usual body functions with rehabilitation treatments. However, many TBI patients face a lifetime of impairment and the need for ongoing medical attention, rehabilitation, and assistance.

According to data from the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS):

  • Roughly 80,000 to 90,000 people experience long-term or lifelong disabilities as a result of TBIs.
  • The mortality rate for TBIs is 30 deaths for every 100,000 patients, or approximately 50,000 deaths each year.
  • The mortality risk for TBIs begins to increase at age 30.

Damages Available to Car Accident Brain Damage Victims in Decatur, Alabama

If you or someone you love sustained a TBI in a Decatur auto accident due to someone else’s negligence, you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for:

  • Present and future medical bills related to the treatment of the accidental TBI
  • Rehabilitation and in-home assistance expenses, including the cost of home-health nurses and assistants and modifications to the home
  • Lost wages and lost earning potential from missed time at work and missed future work opportunities related to the TBI
  • Subjective costs of the pain, suffering, and lost quality of life you endure as a result of the TBI
  • Repair or replacement costs for vehicle damage caused by the accident

An accident lawyer from Morris, King & Hodge, P.C., can help you pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the at-fault driver’s auto insurance policy to help you obtain compensation for your medical bills, physical pain, emotional distress, and other losses the accident caused.

Contact Our Decatur Car Accident Brain Injury Lawyers

Don’t take on the insurance companies alone if you were injured in a car crash in Decatur, AL. You need help from car accident lawyers with experience handling complex personal injury cases.

When you need legal representation after a Decatur car accident TBI, the Northern Alabama personal injury attorneys of Morris, King & Hodge, P.C. want to help. Contact us today for a free case evaluation to discuss the details of your car accident TBI claim with our trusted personal injury lawyers.