The brain is a highly complex and essential organ in the human body. It is the center of the nervous system and determines what actions you make. It controls your thoughts, movements, emotions, memory, vision, touch, respiration. There are several symptoms and types of brain injury and each one should not be ignored. Even a minor brain injury can lead to significant damage and long-lasting harm.
If you were injured because of some else’s wrongful conduct or negligence, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Brain injury victims may be able to recover economic and non-economic damages such as money for lost wages, diminished earning capacity, medical bills, medical monitoring, lifestyle changes, pain and suffering, and future damages. Some victims who suffer from severe brain injury may also be entitled to compensation for life-long care for at home and other necessities they’re no longer able to do because of their injury.
At Mesriani Law Group, our experienced and compassionate Los Angeles brain injury lawyers have over two decades of experience representing clients with head and brain injuries. We have successfully obtained the maximum compensation possible for our clients in brain injury claims. Our expert legal team has significant experience dealing with medical and insurance providers, making sure our clients get the medical and rehabilitation services they need to recover as quickly as possible. We offer clients peace of mind by accepting brain injury cases on a contingency basis. This means that if we don’t win your case, you don’t pay us anything.
Here are shortcuts to the specific topics:
- 1. Brain Injury Lawyers in Los Angeles
- 2. How a Mesriani Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer Can Help
- 3. Why Choose Mesriani Law Group?
- 4. What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
- 9. Who is Liable in an Accident that Results in Brain Injury?
- 10. Compensation in a Brain Injury Claim
- 11. Brain Injury Stats
- 12. Getting a Brian Injury Properly Diagnosed
How a Mesriani Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer Can Help
If you were injured in an accident and sustained a brain injury, you deserve compensation for your losses. The state of California allows brain injury victims to obtain damages for their injuries but obtaining compensation may be difficult without the help of the right traumatic brain injury lawyer. Our traumatic brain injury lawyers at Mesriani Law Group can assist you in many ways during your claim process including:
- Identifying the responsible party for your damages.
- Calculating the fair value of your losses, both economic and non-economic.
- Negotiating the maximum settlement amount from an insurance company.
- Proving how the brain injury significantly impacted your life.
- Gathering essential documents such as medical records to prove the extent of your traumatic brain injury.
- If necessary, taking your case to trial and representing you in court.
Brain injury claims can be extremely complicated depending on nature and extent of a victim’s injury. Proving that someone else’s negligence or wrongful conduct was the cause of your brain injury will be essential to obtaining compensation. Unfortunately, most people don’t have enough knowledge of the California legal process to successfully prove and obtain fair compensation for their losses. Hiring a Mesriani Law Group traumatic brain injury lawyer with experience specifically handling TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) claims will ensure victims have the highest chance of success for their brain injury claim.
Why Choose Mesriani Law Group?
While there may be numerous legal counsel options for brain injury claims, choosing the right representation for your specific situation is essential to obtaining successful results. At Mesriani Law Group, we provide our clients with the following:
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
TBI is a brain dysfunction caused by a blow, bump, a jolt to the head, or a penetrating injury. Most people suffer from TBI that resulted from a motor vehicle crash, fall, assault, or firearm related injury. Studies show that:
- Assaults and motor vehicle crashes are common ways to sustain TBI
- Falls lead to almost half of the TBI-related hospitalizations
- Firearm related suicide is the most common cause of TBI-related death in the country
TBI is generally classified by severity:
- Mild TBI or concussion
- Moderate TBI
- Severe TBI
TBI is a major cause of disability and death. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were approximately 61,000 TBI-related deaths in the United States in 2019. For context, that is approximately 166 TBI-related deaths every day. For older adults, TBI may be misdiagnosed or missed altogether since symptoms of TBI may overlap with other medical conditions common among older adults such as dementia. This can be a serious issue as older adults are more likely to get hospitalized and die from a TBI compared to other age groups.
Unfortunately, TBI may lead to short- or long-term health problems. Those who suffer from TBI may face numerous health problems that may last a few days, weeks, or for the rest of their lives, depending on the severity of their injuries.
For example, a victim with a concussion or mild TBI may experience short-term symptoms and start to feel better within a couple of months. However, a victim with moderate to severe TBI may experience long-term or life-long effects from the brain injury.
Complex Nature of Brain Injuries
The brain is human body’s most complex organ and injuries to the brain are the most complicated to diagnosis and treat. Prognosis is challenging since short and long-term effects of brain injuries are unpredictable.
Brain injuries require extensive medical care and treatment. Some serious injuries even require lifelong medical care. Depending on the severity of the injury, some victims may even require continuous medical attention. Some victims who suffer from brain damage may lose physical or mental functions, preventing them from ever returning to work.
Types of Brain Injury
Essentially, there are two main types of brain injuries: traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and acquired brain injuries (ABI). Many of our clients who sustained brain injuries as the result of an accident suffer from traumatic brain injury. TBI is a brain dysfunction caused by a blow, bump, or jolt to the head. It may also be caused by a penetrating injury, such as one from a gunshot. Common sources of TBI include car accidents, falls, and assaults. According to the CDC, TBIs can be separated into two different categories, penetrating and non-penetrating injuries.
- Penetrating injuries – Also referred to as open TBIs, penetrating injuries happen when an object penetrates or punctures the brain tissue. Open TBIs are often caused by a fall, collision, or object such as falling debris or bullet penetrating the skull.
- Non-penetrating injuries – Also referred to as closed TBIs, non-penetrating injuries happen when an external force causes the brain to move inside the skull. Closed TBIs often lead to blood clots or swelling in the brain.
The most common form of traumatic brain injury are concussions. Concussions can occur from a mild bump to the head, which may result to loss of consciousness.
The common symptoms of concussions are:
- Memory loss
- Lack of coordination
- Ringing in the ears
- Excessive fatigue
However, other common forms of brain injuries also include:
- Anoxic brain injuries – Deprivation of oxygen in the brain.
- Contusions – Blow to the head which cause bleeding or bruising.
- Diffuse axonal injuries – Strong shaking back and forth or side to side rotation of the head.
- Hematomas – Serious bruising, occurs when an injury causes blood to collect and clot.
- Hemorrhage – Severe bleeding from a damaged blood vessel.
- Hypoxic brain injuries – Loss of oxygen, cutting off brain function.
- Lesions – Abnormal change or damage to an area of tissue inside or outside of the body.
- Penetration injuries – Sharp object such as falling object, knife, or bullet penetrating the skull.
- Skull fractures – A break in the bone of the skull.
- Shaken baby syndrome – Serious brain injury that resulted from severely shaking a toddler or infant, often because the baby will not stop crying. This can lead to permanent brain damage or death.
Difference Between TBI and ABI
While both traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and acquired brain injuries (ABI) can result to serious brain damage, there are distinct differences. Most importantly, traumatic brain injuries differ from acquired brain injuries because of the cause of the injury. Victims suffer from ABI due to a pre-existing condition or illness such as:
- Brain cancer
- Brain infection
- Brain inflammation
- Hypoxia (or lack of oxygen to the brain)
Diagnosing brain injuries can be difficult because of the similarities between the symptoms of TBI and ABI. To properly diagnose TBI or ABI, medical professionals must consider whether the onset of symptoms was directly caused by head trauma.
Brain Injury Symptoms
Brain injury victims can experience a wide range of physical and psychological effects. Some symptoms appear immediately after the injury while other symptoms are delayed and appear days, weeks, or month after the injury.
The most common types of brain injury symptoms are:
- Abnormal behavior
- Blurred vision
- Changes to sex drive
- Chronic neck or head pain
- Concentration problems
- Diminished sense of hearing, taste, or sight
- Dizziness or nausea
- Inability to find the right words to convey thoughts
- Inability to understand spoken or written words
- Increased sensitivity to sensory stimuli
- Hypersensitivity to noise, touch, taste, smell, or light
- Lack of hand-eye coordination
- Loss of consciousness (for any amount of time)
- Loss of balance
- Mood swings or changes, such as sudden sadness or anger
- Persistent wakefulness or sleepiness
- Ringing in the ears
- Sensitivity to crowds
- Speech problems or slurred speech
- Sudden headaches
- Unexplained weakness
Brain injury victims are more likely to make impulsive or poor decisions. Since brain injuries can lower inhibitions, they’re also more likely to consume alcohol, use drugs, engage in inappropriate sexual activities. Victims may not notice the changes themselves, but close family members and loved ones can see a change in personality. If you or a loved one has received any type of injury to the head, make sure you seek medical attention as soon as possible. Receiving proper medical diagnosis is very important to ensure you receive prompt medical attention as necessary.
What are the Long-Term Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury?
Victims suffering from moderate to severe TBI may experience a wide range of long-term disabilities. One of the most common long-term effects is disability with motor skills which are grouped into two categories:
- Gross motor skills – Involves the movement of large body parts such as arms and legs.
- Fine motor skills – Involves the movement of smaller body parts such as fingers, wrists, hands, toes, and face.
Common examples of gross motor skill impairment include:
- Uncontrollable movement of muscles
- Poor coordination
- Partial or total paralysis
- Muscle weakness
- Muscle stiffness
Fine motor skills may also be impaired. Common examples include:
- Difficulty performing basic tasks such as writing, hold a pencil, tying shoelaces, or buttoning a shirt.
- Difficulty speaking or swallowing (as an impairment result of the mouth and esophagus muscle)
- Difficulty blinking or having dry eyes (as an impairment result of the muscles that controls the eyes)
Other long-term effects of TBI include impairments with cognitive functions, speech and language, hearing, perception, smell and taste, and vision.
TBI patients commonly experience cognitive impairment which can significantly disrupt their lives. Examples of primary cognitive impairment include:
- Impaired memory
- Impaired executive functioning
- Disturbances of attention
TBI patients may also experience secondary cognitive impairment symptoms which can include:
- Difficulty planning
- Difficulty determining right from wrong
- Difficulty with abstract thinking
- Lack of inhibition
Speech and language impairment include:
- Slurred speech
- Difficulty with reading comprehension
- Abnormally fast or slow speech
- Aphasia, which is difficulty speaking, understanding language, expression ideas, reading, and writing
Other long-term effects of TBI include the following impairments:
- Total or partial hearing loss
- Increased sensitivity to sound
- Tinnitus, persistent ringing in the ears
- Difficulty identifying or perceiving body movements
- Difficulty perceiving temperature
- Difficulty identifying pressure and touch sensations
Smell and Taste
- Total or partial loss of taste
- Sensation of a bad taste in the mouth
- Anosmia, total or partial loss of smell
- Total or partial loss of vision
- Blurred vision
- Double vision
- Difficulty with depth perception
- Photophobia, increased sensitivity to light
Additionally, brain injury victims may also experience emotional and behavior changes. Of all the long-term effects of TBI, emotional and behavioral impacts may be the most difficult to identify since they can be secondary effects after coping with physical and cognitive symptoms. Fortunately, through cognitive behavior therapy and psychological counseling, medical experts continue to successfully treat TBI patients with these symptoms
What Should You Do If You Suffered Head Trauma Resulting in Symptoms of Brain Injury?
If you suffered an injury to the head, seek medical attention as soon as possible. By doing so, you may lessen the possibility of long-term or permanent brain damage. Additionally, after a head injury accident, make sure to keep the following in mind:
- Do not participate in any activity that may cause additional injury or worsen your current injury. Avoid activities such as contact sports since the effect of any successive injuries can aggravate your current condition.
- Avoid operating heavy equipment, driving, or engaging in any potentially dangerous activity until you receive your doctor’s approval.
- Contact an experienced Los Angeles brain injury attorney as soon as possible. A TBI attorney will help you with every aspect of your brain injury case including hiring investigators, collecting and preserving evidence, consulting experts, communicating with witnesses, and protecting your rights so you can obtain the maximum compensation for your injuries.
Common Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries
According to the CDC, slip and fall accidents are the leading cause of traumatic brain injuries in the United States and accounts for 47% of all such injuries. The most vulnerable populations for slip and falls are children under 14 years old and adults older than 65. Getting struck by a heavy object is the second leading cause of TBI in the country.
Other common causes of TBIs can include:
- Bicycle accidents
- Cars crashing with pedestrians or bicyclists
- Contact sports accidents
- Construction accidents
- Explosions and blasts
- Falls from ladders and scaffolding
- Head-on collisions
- Metro accidents
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Rollover car accidents
- Sexual and physical assaults
- SUV and pickup truck accidents
- Workplace accidents
Brain Injuries from Toxic Substances
Exposure to toxic substances such as pesticides, noxious gases, lead paint, and other environmental toxins can have disastrous effects on our brain. Unfortunately, they are often difficult to diagnose and even harder to prove.
These catastrophic injuries are referred to as acquired brain injuries (ABI), where the brain was functioning normally until it was injured by an external factor. Since this type of brain damage generally happens over time, the victim may not realize the problems were a direct result of the brain injury accident. Unfortunately, the victim’s doctor may only note the physical results such as difficulty walking but fail to suspect toxic substances as the source of the injury.
If you suspect you may have been exposed to toxic substances and suffered injury from doing so, you should seek prompt medical attention. Next, contact a Los Angeles brain injury lawyer to discuss your legal options. Victims of brain injuries are entitled to compensation for their losses. An experienced attorney can help determine the parties at fault and hold them responsible for your injuries.
Who is Liable in an Accident that Results in Brain Injury?
To obtain compensation for your brain injury, you will need to correctly identify the responsible parties. Depending on your circumstances, the negligent parties that may be responsible for your head injury may include:
- Anesthesiologist – Who administered an anesthesia overdose.
- Apartment landlord – Who negligently allowed toxic lead paint chips to accumulate around the apartment complex.
- Driver – Who caused a motor vehicle accident by failing to follow traffic safety laws or engaged in negligent behavior such as driving under the influence or distracted driving.
- Employer – Who didn’t provide proper training or protective gear to handle hazardous industrial chemicals.
- Government or municipality agency – Who operates a public swimming pool where the lifeguard failed to rescue a drowning child.
- Parent, nanny, or caretaker – Who severely shakes a baby, causing shaken baby syndrome or causes injury to an elderly patient.
- Manufacturer – Paramedical product manufacturer whose product causes a stroke.
- School board – Who failed to take proper actions against a class bully who physically assaulted another classmate.
Determining the negligent parties may be complicated as the parties at-fault may try to deny any responsibility. If your brain injuries were due to the negligence of someone else, you will want to hire an experienced Los Angeles brain injury lawyer to handle your claim. A brain injury lawyer can not only identify all the negligent parties but also hold them accountable for your injuries.
Compensation in a Brain Injury Claim
There are endless ways that a brain injury could affect someone’s life. From short term rehabilitation to life-long medical care, the lives of brain injury victims are forever changed.
Some victims experience symptoms right away while other symptoms may take days, weeks, or months to appear. Regardless, brain injury victims are entitled to financial compensation for their injuries. Money can never erase the horrendous experience, but it can help the victim and their loved ones ease the financial burden. Brain injury attorneys can help determine the types of damages TBI victims are entitled to receive and make sure insurance companies don’t get away with just paying minimal compensation.
The compensation for each brain injury claim will vary but possible types of damages victims may be entitled to include:
- Medical expenses – Any medical bills including hospital visits, emergency room bills, and life-long support.
- Medical monitoring – Some effects may not show up immediately, and victims may be entitled to damages for future medical monitoring.
- Lost wages – For any amount of time you missed work due to your injury.
- Diminished earning capacity – Any work wages you had reduced because of your limited working capacity after your accident.
- Lifestyle changes – Any impairment to your ability to do normal activities you had to give up after the injury such as playing with your kids, hiking, biking or traveling.
- Life-long care – For in-home and other non-medical necessities required because of your brain injury including cleaning, cooking, and driving.
- Future damages – For likely additional health issues that may arise in the future since people who suffer from head injuries are more likely to develop health disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and depression.
- Pain and suffering – For the physical and mental anguish you suffered because of the injury.
In some cases, victims may also be awarded punitive damages if the negligent party acted with malice, recklessness, or an intention to harm. A skilled brain injury lawyer can identify the damages you’re entitled to and help you obtain the maximum compensation possible.
Brain Injury Stats
According to the Brain Injury Association of America, at least 5.3 million in the United States live with a permanent brain injury-related disability. For perspective, that’s one person living with brain injury for every 60 people.
Unfortunately, some people with brain injuries may appear to function normally such as walking and speaking, but some of the injuries are unseen. For example, brain injury victims commonly suffer from cognitive impairments, memory loss, and behavioral and emotional changes. Some victims may never return to their previous jobs ever again while others can never work again for the rest of their lives.
According to BMJ Open, researchers reviewed data from California’s Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development and classified 1.2 million adult patients diagnosed with traumatic brain injury between 2005 and 2014. Based on the findings:
- TBI emergency department visits increased by 57.7%
- 5% of patients revisited the emergency department within the same year
- 4% of revisits resulted in rehospitalization
In California, there were 32,838 TBI cases in 2014 which led to non-fatal hospitalization.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, there are about 2.8 million new cases of TBI each year. This leads to:
- 5 million emergency department visits
- 282,000 hospitalizations
- 50,000 deaths
Depending on the severity of the injury, the effects of brain damage can be permanent. Injuries affect a victim’s overall health, well-being, cognitive function, behavior, and ability to succeed in work, school, relationships.
Getting a Brian Injury Properly Diagnosed
After an accident, anyone with signs of moderate to severe TBI should seek prompt medical attention. Because not much can be done to reverse initial brain damage caused by trauma, medical professionals attempt to stabilize victims with TBI and focus on preventing further injury. Our brain injury lawyers will help you find the most respected medical experts in the industry who specialize in brain injury diagnosis.
To prove the extent of your injuries and seek all compensation you’re entitled to, our team of experts will conduct the following:
- Neurological tests – If your doctor suspects a head injury, you’ll likely be given a neurological test in the doctor’s office or emergency room. You will be rated using the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), which is the most common scoring system used to describe your level of consciousness after a traumatic brain injury.
- Neuropsychological tests – Neuropsychological testing helps determine the parts of the brain impacted by a TBI. It can also determine how these impairments may impact your daily functioning. Testing also helps determine how other factors such as anxiety and depression affect your cognitive skills.
- Imaging tests – Some patients may need imaging tests such as a CT or MRI scan to determine if there are tumors, skull fractures, penetrating injuries, a subdural hematoma, or any other observable damage to the brain. Unfortunately, imaging tests cannot identify every type of brain injury making it difficult to prove the severity of injury.
- Personal observations – Observations by family members, friends, and co-workers can help diagnose brain injury. It can also help identify personality disorders that sometimes accompany brain damage. Your doctor may interview people you knew prior to the injury about the differences they may have noticed. The interviews may show the severity of the injury by revealing changes in your personality, behavior, or abilities.
Measuring the Severity of the Brain Injury
TBI hospitalizations average at 288,000 each year, more than 20 times the spinal cord injury hospitalizations. 34 percent of all traumatic deaths result from head injuries. Starting at age 30, the mortality risk increases after a head injury. 78.8 percent of all reported TBI accidents represents the male population, while 21.2 percent represents the female population.
Regardless of sex or age, TBI victims may all experience symptoms of brain injury. Each victim’s head injury may be categorized based on acuteness as mild, moderate, or severe injury.
Symptoms of mild TBI include:
- Drowsiness or fatigue
- Nausea or vomiting
- Feeling confused, dazed, or disoriented for a few seconds or minutes
- Loss of consciousness for a few seconds or minutes
- Loss of balance
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Difficulty speaking
- Ringing in ears or blurred vision
- Bad taste in mouth
- Sensitivity to sound or light
Symptoms of moderate to severe TBI include:
- Persistent or worsening headache
- Persistent vomiting or nausea
- Persistent or severe confusion
- Loss of consciousness
- Loss of coordination
- Seizures or convulsions
- Numbness or weakness in the digits
- Combativeness, agitation, or other significant changes in behavior or temperament
- Inability to wake up from sleep
- Clear fluid draining from the ears or nose
- Dilation of the pupils (in either one or both eyes)
Getting the Right Treatment for Brain Injuries
Many head injuries require an immediate visit to the emergency room to treat brain damage and swelling. In some cases, patients may need immediate surgery to prevent TBI from worsening.
After emergency care, doctors may continue to treat TBI symptoms that cause problems in a patient’s life. Since these injuries may result in a patient’s inability to perform routine daily tasks, rehabilitation and medication may be necessary. Patients may need to relearn certain skills through occupation or physical therapy while others may require around-the-clock care.
A TBI patient’s rehabilitation team may include:
- Patient and the patient’s family
- Rehabilitation medical physician
- Rehabilitation nurse
- General practitioner
- Clinical psychologist
- Vocational rehabilitation services and counselors
- Allied health professionals including an occupational therapist, physiotherapist, social worker, and speech pathologist
- Other medical specialties including neurosurgery and orthopedic surgery
Contact A Brain Injury Lawyer at Mesriani Law Group
When you’re injured, it may be difficult to deal with legal paperwork, insurance companies, and medical providers. TBI victims should be able to focus on their recovery instead of dealing with any additional stress. At Mesriani Law Group, our experienced and compassionate brain injury lawyers have helped brain injury clients across Los Angeles obtain the best possible results and maximum damages for their claims. While financial compensation may not take away the injuries from the accident, it can help ease the financial burden so you can focus on moving forward. We are confident that we can help you achieve the best possible outcome and accepts clients on a contingency basis. This means that if we don’t win your case, you don’t pay us anything. Contact our law firm today for your free consultation.
Brain Injury Lawyer FAQs
How much compensation do you get for brain injury?
In California, the median brain injury verdict was $1,595,000. Nationally, the median amount for a brain injury was $1,400,000. However, keep in mind that each brain injury case settlement value varies. Each case is unique, and the claim value depends on several different factors including the type of injuries sustained, the type of care received, and whether future, life-long care that is required. While mild TBI cases generally settle for less than moderate to severe TBI cases, even a mild TBI case can be worth up to millions.
How much can you sue for head injury?
The amount you can sue for head injury will depend on your specific case. But even mild traumatic brain injury settlements can be worth more than $1,000,000. Cases involving moderate to severe TBI can easily exceed $10,000,000 in circumstances where the injured party needs extensive medical treatment and long-term care.
Can I sue for head injury?
Anyone can sue for head injury if they suffer a traumatic brain injury due to the negligence or misconduct of another person or entity. An experienced California personal injury attorney can fight for the damages you are owed.
What are the 4 types of traumatic brain injuries?
The 4 types of traumatic brain injuries are concussion, contusion, anoxic brain injury, and penetrating injury. Concussion is a minor brain injury caused by an impact to the head such as shaking or a sudden movement. A brain contusion is bruising of the brain tissue. Anoxic brain injuries are caused by oxygen deprivation to the brain. After only a few minutes without the proper amount of oxygen, brain cells will start to die, and the person will sustain brain injury. Penetrating brain injuries occurs when an object or outside force punctures through the skull and harms the brain.