Brain & Spinal Cord Injury

Brain and Spinal Cord Injury – Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. What is a Brain Injury or Spinal Cord Injury?
  3. Types of Brain Injuries
  4. Acquired Brain Injury
  5. Treating Brain Injuries

Introduction

Every year, 1.5 million Americans sustain brain or spinal cord injuries. The victims who survive and are fortunate enough not to suffer permanent disability can expect a long and laborious rehabilitation period; the average period extends anywhere from five to 15 years. Because the brain controls every movement and function of the human body, any damage associated with brain injuries can have extensive repercussions. Victims often experience physical disability, cognitive and behavioral impairment, and emotional instability. It is important for victims of brain injury to receive qualified legal representation. At Wiener & Lambka, we have represented numerous brain injury and spinal cord injury victims. Our attorneys in Seattle understand the complex nature of brain and spinal cord injuries and will aggressively fight to obtain the compensation to which you are entitled.

What is a Brain Injury or Spinal Cord Injury?

The brain regulates and controls all of the functions of the human body, from breathing to organ functions to cognitive thought. The spinal cord is the medium through which the brain sends its messages. When a brain or spinal cord injury occurs, any or all of the body’s processes and functions may be damaged.

A brain injury victim may experience a wide range of symptoms, including paralysis, coma or loss of consciousness, cognitive impairment, and loss of coordination. Similar debilitating effects occur if a person suffers spinal cord trauma.

If you believe you are entitled to compensation for your injury, it is important to contact an attorney with extensive experience representing brain injury and spinal cord injury victims. Our lawyers in Seattle have had great success representing Washington residents in brain injury civil lawsuits. We are committed to aggressively representing your interests until a satisfactory resolution is achieved.

Types of Brain Injuries

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Traumatic brain injuries are caused by excessive external force to the head. This usually comes in the form of a blow to the head, in which the brain is shaken fiercely inside the skull, causing it to bruise or swell severely. In some instances the physical trauma breaks the skull, which in turn pierces the brain, resulting in further injury.

  • The symptoms of TBI include:
    • Coma or loss of consciousness
    • Paralysis or loss of motor ability
    • Impaired coordination
    • Dilated pupils
    • Changes in vision such as blurry or double vision
    • Respiratory trouble or slowed breathing and pulse
    • Vomiting
    • Cognitive difficulties
    • Loss of bowel or bladder control
    • Emotional instability

Traumatic brain injuries are classified according to the severity of the injury. Doctors use a test called the Glasgow Coma Scale to measure the extent of the brain trauma and, based on the measured severity, assign the injury to a particular category. The Glasgow Coma Scale assesses eye opening ability, verbal response, and motor response. The doctor gives each category a score. The scores of each section of the test are totaled at the end and then used to assign the brain injury to one of three different classifications:

Mild Traumatic Brain Injury: Associated with a concussion or temporary loss of consciousness, a mild traumatic brain injury causes brief periods of confusion and loss of normal bodily functions. Although tests may appear normal, the patient’s physical, cognitive, and emotional capabilities may be affected.

Moderate Traumatic Brain Injury: Moderate traumatic brain injury usually involves loss of consciousness that lasts anywhere from several minutes to a few hours. A feeling of confusion and disorientation may persist for days or weeks. Physical, cognitive, and emotional impairments can last for a few months or, in rare cases, be permanent.

Severe Traumatic Brain Injury: Victims of severe traumatic brain injury experience extended periods of unconsciousness or coma, the latter of which can last indefinitely. The length of the coma and the damage to bodily functions and capabilities are directly correlated. Victims whose brain injuries are classified as severe almost always experience permanent damage to their physical, cognitive, and emotional abilities.

Our brain and spinal cord injury attorneys in Seattle possess unmatched experience representing personal injury victims who have sustained traumatic brain injury.

Acquired Brain Injury

Acquired brain injury results from a disruption in the flow of oxygen to the brain. The longer the disruption, the more severe the brain injury. The disruption may be caused by a number of things, including stroke, aneurysm, heart attack, tumors, near-drowning, and airway obstruction. Also, if a child is deprived of oxygen during the birthing process, acquired brain injury may result.

The symptoms of acquired brain injury include:

  • Cognitive disabilities such as learning difficulties and impaired memory and thought processes
  • Vegetative state that persists for a prolonged period of time.
  • Behavioral problems, such as “acting out”
  • Depression
  • Loss of muscle coordination

If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic or acquired brain injury, the first step is to have a qualified, board-certified physician assess the injury. You should then immediately contact a lawyer with considerable experience handling spinal cord injury and brain injury cases. Our attorneys in Seattle have successfully represented brain injury victims throughout the state of Washington. At Wiener & Lambka we promise to aggressively defend your legal rights and fight to secure the compensation you and your family are rightfully due.

Treating Brain Injuries

Every brain injury is unique, and physicians therefore devise a personalized treatment plan for each victim. The most successful recoveries are usually achieved by victims with a supportive group of caretakers that includes doctors, nurses, psychotherapists, family, and close friends. Rehabilitation is a long and extensive process that is quite expensive. Our brain and spinal cord injury lawyers based out of Seattle pride themselves on having obtained numerous settlements that cover all treatment costs as well as lost wages and impaired future earnings.

If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury or spinal cord injury, contact our qualified attorneys in Seattle as soon as possible.

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