Nashville Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Lawyers
If you’ve been injured in a recent accident that left you with a traumatic brain injury, you’re likely dealing with reduced functioning, high medical costs, and possibly an inability to work. Traumatic brain injuries are extremely serious and can be life-changing. They may not be fully treatable, and you may have to handle the consequences of the injury for the rest of your life.
While the consequences of a traumatic brain injury may be catastrophic, you can seek justice if your injury occurred due to an accident. Traumatic brain injuries often occur as a result of automobile or motorcycle collisions or pedestrian accidents. If you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury due to someone else’s negligence, contact an attorney at NST Law in Nashville for a free case consultation. We can assist you in seeking monetary compensation for your medical costs, lost wages, and emotional distress that occurred as a result of your accident.
Table of Contents
What is a traumatic brain injury (TBI)?
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) usually occurs as a result of a violent blow or jolt to the head or body. An object that goes through brain tissue may also cause a traumatic brain injury. A TBI may affect your brain cells temporarily. More serious injuries can result in bruising, torn tissues, bleeding, and other physical damage to the brain. These types of injuries may result in the need for long-term care.
How common are traumatic brain injuries in motor vehicle accidents?
Traumatic brain injuries that occur as a result of motor vehicle accidents are very common. During an accident, an occupant of a car is subjected to forces that can cause the neck and head to move in a very quick, whip-like motion. The sudden deceleration of the head can result in a TBI. There’s also the potential for projectiles from the crash to hit the person’s head and cause damage that leads to a traumatic brain injury.
What are the symptoms of traumatic brain injuries?
Symptoms of a traumatic brain injury will differ depending on how severe the injury is.
Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries
When a mild traumatic brain injury occurs, the below symptoms may be present:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Fatigue or drowsiness
- Problems with speech
- Dizziness or loss of balance
- Sensory problems, such as blurred vision
- Loss of consciousness or a state of confusion
- Memory or concentration problems
- Feeling depressed or anxious
- Difficulty sleeping
If a mild traumatic brain injury is suspected, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately. Identifying the cause quickly and starting treatment may improve the patient’s outcome.
Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injuries
More severe traumatic brain injuries can include any of the signs and symptoms of mild injury in addition to:
- Loss of consciousness from several minutes to hours
- Convulsions or seizures
- Dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes
- Inability to awaken from sleep
- Loss of coordination
- Profound confusion
- Unusual behavior
- Slurred speech
- Coma and other disorders of consciousness
A traumatic brain injury can be extremely dangerous. It’s important to get help as soon as possible if one is suspected.
How is a traumatic brain injury diagnosed?
Directly after an accident, you may not feel the effects of any injuries. Adrenaline often impairs a person’s ability to realize when they’ve been seriously injured. You may not feel the effects of an injury for several hours or until the next day. However, it’s important to seek treatment immediately, especially after a motor vehicle accident. A health care provider in Nashville, Tennessee, will be able to assess your injuries to determine whether anything serious has occurred. They can also provide you with an appropriate treatment plan.
Doctors and physicians use different tests to diagnose a traumatic brain injury. They will begin with questions or tasks designed to assess how well the individual is functioning. Next, they will proceed with a CT scan that takes X-rays of the brain. A CT scan will show if the brain is bleeding, bruised, or has other damage. If the doctor believes more tests are required for diagnosis, they may order an MRI. An MRI utilizes magnets and radio waves to produce more detailed images than CT scans.
During the testing, doctors may rank traumatic brain injuries using the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS). This method of measurement considers a person’s functioning in three different areas, including speaking, ability to open the eyes, and capacity for movement. A GCS score of 13 or higher indicates mild TBI, while moderate TBI is indicated for a GCS score between 9 and 12. A score of 8 or lower suggests severe TBI.
How do I treat a traumatic brain injury?
Mild traumatic brain injuries are generally treated with lots of rest. It’s advised to reduce tasks that require significant concentration. Alcohol and drugs can interfere with recovery, so patients should avoid them.
Emergency care for more severe types of traumatic brain injuries may require surgery. Doctors will focus on ensuring that the brain receives enough oxygen through the control of brain pressure, preventing further injury to the head or neck.
Medications may be required to treat symptoms of a TBI and lower the risk of conditions associated with it.
Long-term care of traumatic brain injuries may result in significant medical expenses. If the person is unable to work, they may have to depend on family or friends for support.
What are the long-term effects of a traumatic brain injury?
The CDC has conducted an observational study to assess the five-year outcomes of persons with a traumatic brain injury. They found that:
- 22% of individuals died
- 30% experienced a further health decline
- 22% stayed the same
- 26% improved
After surviving a moderate or severe traumatic brain injury, a person’s life expectancy is nine years shorter. They’re also more likely to die from other causes, such as seizures, drug poisoning, infections, or pneumonia.
Can I receive compensation for a traumatic brain injury caused by a motor vehicle accident?
You may be entitled to compensation if you suffered a traumatic brain injury as the result of a motor vehicle accident. To comply with Tennessee’s statute of limitations, you must file your lawsuit within one year of the initial injury. Types of compensation awarded may include:
Economic damages include the cost of past and future medical care, as well as lost wages and employment opportunities. These types of damages are easily quantifiable. Physicians and other experts may be required to provide opinions on the likelihood of recovery if future medical care or wages are claimed in the lawsuit.
Non-economic damages may include emotional distress and pain and suffering. These are less easy to prove. However, a clear decline in the patient’s quality of life may provide some evidence. Friends, family, or doctors may provide additional statements if the person is demonstrating signs of emotional issues.
A judge may award punitive damages if the accident was caused by gross negligence and they want to set an example to others. Punitive damages are a way for the legal system to discourage future wrong behavior and punish the individual or entity that caused the injury. Tennessee has a limit on punitive damages. Amounts awarded may not exceed $500,000, or twice the amount of compensatory damages, whichever is greater.
Why should I hire a lawyer at NST Law?
Every attorney at NST Law is well versed in personal injury law and can represent your interests in the legal sphere. They can work with you to create a case that demonstrates your right to compensation after sustaining a traumatic brain injury in Nashville, Tennessee. For over 30 years, we have obtained over $1.5 billion in verdicts, judgments, and settlements on behalf of thousands of injured clients. Contact us for a free case consultation today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Sustaining a traumatic brain injury or caring for someone who’s suffering from a traumatic brain injury due to someone else’s negligence can be overwhelming. You may have many questions and concerns. The Nashville attorneys at NST Law are happy to help.
A traumatic brain injury can result in loss of functioning and an inability to work. An individual who suffers from this type of injury may require regular and ongoing medical care, severely impacting their quality of life. It may also affect the lives of their family members, who may assist them in daily living tasks.
In some cases, damage to the brain may be reversible. However, it will likely require a combination of treatment and long-term therapy, which may be very expensive. A doctor can provide advice on further treatment that may be required.
Yes, if you are the parent or guardian of someone who suffered a traumatic brain injury, you may file a personal injury lawsuit on their behalf. You will need to provide evidence of the injury that your loved one sustained. Obtaining legal assistance is very important in these types of lawsuits.