A traumatic brain injury (TBI) almost always causes temporary or permanent brain damage. This damage can leave a victim with cognitive, emotional, and physical disabilities, including personality changes, memory loss, seizures, and severe headaches. Victims of head and brain injuries may no longer be able to earn a living, and they often require long-term rehabilitative therapy.
If you or a family member has suffered a TBI, contact us to schedule a free consultation with our Rhode Island traumatic brain injury lawyers. Call (888) 281-3100 or contact us online today.
What is the Cost of a Traumatic Brain Injury?
One of the primary concerns facing a traumatic brain injury victim is making sure that any compensation or damages the courts awarded are adequate for the intended treatments. For example, you might find a defendant offering an amount that is only adequate for stabilization while the prosecution would ask for enough money to give the victim a chance of a full recovery.
When calculating the lifetime cost of a brain injury, it is essential that you consider many factors:
- Loss of learning and earning potential
- Immediate medical costs
- The price of long-term therapy or treatment
- Other costs potentially associated with comatose patients
- The age of the victim
There is no clear answer as to how much a brain injury might cost you over time. As an estimate, Northwestern University published an article lifetime cost ranging from $85,000 to 3 million for a traumatic brain injury. Acute care for moderate TBIs resulted in a cost of $25,174 to $81,153 while mild cases were between $33,284 and $35,954. Different options for life care determined continued annual costs, with a facility placement ranging from $49,688 to $84,082, depending on the type of facility. If the patient chose care at home, the annual cost was just over $222,000 while rehabilitation increased that number to $450,000.
Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury
The symptoms of a traumatic brain injury are not always apparent right away. Some may not be present for months or years. This makes diagnosis more difficult.
If you or a family member has been in an accident that had the potential to cause a brain injury, watch for these symptoms:
- Blurred vision
- Ringing in the ears
- Tiredness or sleepiness
- A bad taste in the mouth
- A change in sleep habits
- Behavior or mood changes
- Trouble with memory, concentration, attention or thinking
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Nausea or vomiting
- Slurred speech
- Convulsions or seizures
- Enlargement of the pupil (dark center) of one or both eyes
- Numbness or tingling of arms or legs
- Loss of coordination
Common Causes of TBI
A TBI can occur without a loss of consciousness and even without a direct blow to the head if manifested by feeling dazed, disoriented, or confused or having any loss of memory either before or after the accident.
There are many types of trauma that can cause traumatic brain injuries, including:
- Car and truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Bicycle and pedestrian accidents
- Slip-and-fall accidents
- Construction accidents
- Other workplace accidents
- Boat accidents
- Maritime accidents
Other causes of traumatic brain injury can include:
- Exposure to toxic substances in the workplace such as pesticides, carbon monoxide, fuels, solvents, and metals
- Anoxia (complete oxygen deprivation) or hypoxia (reduced oxygen) caused by drowning, choking, strangulation, or various environmental problems at work or at home
Prompt legal action can prove to be the key to a brain injury victim's ability to cope with the lasting effects of an accident. Fair compensation can allow the person to receive high-caliber therapy, get housekeeping help if necessary, replace lost income and otherwise do what it takes to live a rewarding life despite living with a disability.
Imaging To Show Traumatic Brain Injury
There are several diagnostic imaging tools used in traumatic brain injury cases. These include:
- CT Scans – Computed tomography is a diagnostic imaging procedure that uses a combination of X-rays and computer technology to produce slices of the brain. In CT scans the X-ray beam moves in a circle around the head. This allows many different views of the brain. The X-ray information is sent to a computer that interprets the data and displays it in two-dimensional form. CT scans can show injuries to brain structure and brain tissue.
- MRI – Magnetic resonance imaging of the brain is a test that uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to take pictures of the head and brain. The MRI can show damage to brain tissue and inflammation to brain tissue.
- fMRI – Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging is an MRI that focuses on function. Using an MRI scanner, it captures the flow of blood to different regions of the brain and shows changes in blood oxygenation and flow. When a brain is more active it consumes more oxygen causing increased blood flow to that area of the brain. An fMRI can depict abnormal brain function.
- DWI – Diffusion Weighted Imaging is a form of MRI based upon the diffusion of water molecules inside brain tissue. DWI can show brain abnormalities.
- DTI – Diffusion Tensor Imaging is a type of MRI allowing the study of brain tissue microstructure. It gives indications about possible nerve fiber anomalies in white matter in the brain that are not visible in other types of imaging. DTI can show injuries in the white matter of the brain depicting diffuse axonal injury (damage to the axons that connect the neurons – brain cells).
- PET Scans – Positron Emission Tomography is a brain scan that is a type of imaging to test the brain. It uses a radioactive substance called a tracer to look for injury in the brain. A PET scan shows how the brain and its tissues are working and shows abnormalities.
- SPECT Scans – Single Photon Emission Computed Tomography is a brain scan using nuclear imaging to show how blood flows to tissues of the brain. A SPECT scan uses a CT scan and a radioactive material (tracer) to show how the blood flows to the brain tissues. The SPECT scan can show brain abnormalities and brain injuries.
Contact Karns & Kerrison If You or Your Loved One Suffered a TBI
Our founding attorney and renowned Rhode Island traumatic brain injury lawyer, Robert T. Karns, is one of the nation's premier advocates for head injury victims. Over the past 45 years, Robert has conducted extensive research in this area and has established a reputation for successfully handling some of the most complex brain injury cases in the country.
He applies sophisticated research and well-documented evidence to build strong cases for brain injury victims dealing with problematic conditions made worse by traumatic brain injury, such as:
- Brain damage
- Chiari I malformation
- Diffuse axonal injury
- Post-traumatic vertigo
- Sleep disturbances
- Vision problems
If you or a loved one has sustained a head or brain injury because of someone else's negligence, you are entitled to seek justice and full compensation to cover your medical expenses, loss of income, and pain and suffering. It is crucial that you seek out an experienced personal injury lawyer who understands the complexities of head and brain injuries.
View our TBI resources or contact us at (888) 281-3100 for a complimentary consultation with one of our traumatic brain injury attorneys in RI.
Car Accident Traumatic Brain InjuryI would definitely recommend Karns & Kerrison to anyone who asked - they come through for you.
- Patricia Feeley
Slipped on Greasy FloorI have no reservations whatsoever in recommending Karns & Kerrison.
- Mike Carey
Rear End CollisionNothing but positive results from consultation, to filing the legal suit, handling of a major operation, to recovery and finalizing a generous settlement.
- Larry Goldfarb
Horrible Car AccidentThey not only got me a fair settlement, they helped to get me well.
Motor Vehicle Accident - Braga BridgeIt was comforting to know I had someone watching out for me.
- Jeanie Small
Pedestrian hit by CarI did not know where to turn when I realized I needed legal help but I am very happy that I found Karns & Kerrison.