Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are among the most devastating injuries you can suffer in any kind of accident. The brain is the most important organ in the body—it’s what makes us ourselves. But proving that someone has a TBI and that it was caused by an accident can be very difficult. What should you do if you think someone else’s negligence caused your TBI?
What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
A TBI is an injury to the brain. Although injuries may be classed as “mild” or “minor,” it’s now recognized that there really is no such thing as a “minor” brain injury.
- Concussions are common closed-head traumas that occur when there is an impact to the outside of the head. Concussions can cause headaches, dizziness, confusion, minor memory loss, and occasionally loss of consciousness.
- Diffuse axonal injuries (DAI) happen when the brain tissue itself is stretched and torn. This type of injury may cause brain cells to die. The damage from a DAI can range from personality changes and memory loss to fatality.
- Contusions or bruising happens when the brain “bounces” inside the skull. Bleeding can occur between the brain and the skull, leading to clots that cause pressure on the brain.
TBIs can take hours or even days to develop. It is possible for you to leave the scene of an accident feeling fine and then experience head injury symptoms many hours later. For this reason, anyone who has been in an accident where head trauma is a possibility should be examined by a doctor.
Proving TBI In Court
Some types of TBI and head trauma can be seen in medical imaging. A skull fracture or a subdural hematoma will show up on a CT scan or MRI. However, most types of TBI will not. To show you have had serious head trauma, you need something more than an x-ray.
Even if your first visit to the ER did not show anything, it would establish a baseline for future visits. One reason many insurance claims are denied or delayed is that the patient failed to seek treatment immediately after the injury. If you need to see the doctor again, keep all records of repeated visits. This gives a timeline for your injury and treatment.
If your head hit the window or the dashboard, that’s good evidence that you could have some kind of head trauma, even if the doctor didn’t think you had a concussion. An incident report that shows the mechanism of injury can help establish what happened to your head, even if you can’t remember it yourself.
You’ll need two kinds of statements, one about the accident itself and one about your daily routine. If anyone saw the accident, they can describe what happened, especially if you lost consciousness or were acting strangely afterward. Family and friends can testify about changes in your behavior since the accident, which can indicate TBI.
Should you suspect you have suffered a TBI, keep a personal journal of your thoughts, feelings, and daily activities. If you are experiencing headaches, dizziness, tinnitus, or other physical problems, note them and when they occur. If anything doesn’t seem quite “right” as you go about your day, explain that sensation. Anything that can help support your claim of TBI should be listed so that it can be presented with your case.
Remember, TBI has very few external symptoms. Unless you have suffered a skull fracture or penetrating head wound, most of what you are experiencing can’t be seen even with a CT scan or MRI. The only way to prove you have suffered a TBI is by the subjective symptoms you describe or that others see you experience. Details will help prove your case.
We Can Help
If you believe your traumatic brain injury was due to the negligent acts of another person, you need skilled legal advice. Contact the Texas traumatic brain injury attorneys of Gibson Hill Personal Injury at 512-580-8334 as soon as possible for a free consultation on your case. We can gather the information you need to present your case and work to get you the compensation you deserve.
We know this is a very difficult time for you. You’ve got enough to think about without having to make your legal case too. Let our attorneys help you with the hard work of gathering documentation and putting it all together. Our legal team is standing by to help you present your case and get the necessary justice and compensation. Call us at 512-580-8334 today.