Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic Brain Injury resulting from car collisions and other accidents can be one of the most complicated injuries to prove. McHenry County brain injury attorney Robert H. Hanaford has successfully obtained millions of dollars in compensation for clients who sustained traumatic brain injuries. As a McHenry County personal injury lawyer, Robert H. Hanaford understands the effects a traumatic brain injury (TBI) can have on a client and their family.

The victim of a TBI may immediately realize that a TBI has occurred. Typically, the injury occurs from a direct impact with the head and another object. For instance, impact with a wind shield, door frame, from a fall or an object dropped from height at a construction site. The symptoms can vary, including dizziness, headaches, confusion, loss of consciousness and amnesia (inability to recall the event). http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/tbi/tbi.htm

There will typically be some visual evidence of the trauma on the head, such as a bump, bruising or cut. In the most serious of cases the victim will develop a subdural hematoma which is bleeding between the brain and the skull. Pressure on the brain in a closed head injury if not addresses quickly by surgery may result in severe brain damage or death. Based on a CT Scan or MRI findings, the surgeon will actually drill burr holes in the skull to relieve the pressure on the brain by draining the accumulated blood.

Attorneys knowledgeable about TBI will acquire all medical records for review and consult with the neuro-surgeon and obtain the services of a neuro-psychologist. The long term effects of a TBI may include headaches, dizziness, confusion, mood change and the inability to focus and concentrate on complex or even simple tasks. The brain injury lawyer will also interview family members, friends and co-workers to establish a base line comparison of how the injured client acted before and after the injury. In the case of a minor, obtaining school records is essential.

The victim that suffers a TBI may seem perfectly fine on the outside, but as a result of the TBI may suffer from an inability to conduct themselves in the in ordinary activities of daily living. A school age victim may suddenly develop emotional issues and the inability to perform at the same academic level as before the injury.

Adults who have suffered a TBI may have difficulty with inter personal relations and an inability to perform their occupational requirements at the same level as before the injury.

For example, a TBI that affects the frontal lobe of the brain may impair what is known as one’s executive functions. This is includes, for example, impairment of a person’s ability to make rational decisions and perform occupational tasks.

Proof of the effects of a traumatic brain injury case requires a multi-disciplinary approach by your McHenry County brain injury lawyer, depending on both medical professionals to establish and describe the injury and lay witnesses to describe the differences in the injured person’s behavior after the injury. A significant component of proof of impact on the injured person’s life will be psychological tests administered by a neuro-psychologist. But, credible testimony from family, friends and co-workers is essential to establishing damages.

The defense will often argue that the absence of positive findings on diagnostic tests such as CT Scans and MRI are proof that a brain injury did not occur. This is a defense that must be overcome by a qualified brain injury lawyer. A brain injury may have in fact occurred despite the lack of positive diagnostic findings.

A traumatic brain injury may also occur without a direct impact to the head. For example, in a car collision with a heavy rear end impact the victim’s head may rapidly move forward and backwards. This is commonly referred to a “Whip Lash” injury. However, the brain may suffer damage because of what is commonly referred to as an acceleration-deceleration of the head. This mechanism of injury is best explained by comparing the brain to a Jell-O mold placed on a backing sheet that is then pushed quickly into a wall. The Jell-O will quickly move forward and backwards. The same mechanism occurs to the brain as it moves forward and backwards. This movement may cause tearing of the blood vessels between the brain and the skull. In addition, there are boney cranial ridges on the skull that can damage the brain during the forward and backward movement. This is the similar mechanism injury in shaken baby syndrome incidents where the infant is violently shaken.

The effects of a TBI can have permanent consequences on a person’s ability to earn income and enjoy life. In addition, TBI injuries have a profound effect on the injured person’s family. Talk to McHenry County brain injury lawyer Robert H. Hanaford to discuss your case or that of a loved one. McHenry County attorney Hanaford can be reached 24/7 on his cell phone at 312-636-4807.