DC Primary and Secondary Brain Injury Attorney

Severe TBI often requires extensive medical care long after the initial emergency treatment. For injured victims and their families, medical expenses, funeral expenses, and lost income can add a tremendous financial burden to the already devastating physical and emotional trauma associated with a serious injury or death. Consulting a DC primary and secondary brain injury lawyer is often the first step in achieving financial recovery following an injury caused by another’s negligence or malice. Any serious head trauma can create a significant traumatic brain injury. Common causes of head injury include falls, automobile accidents, and being struck by or against a hard object. A severe blow or penetrating injury may cause lasting damage, and injured victims must learn to adapt to life with a permanent impairment. A catastrophic brain injury may be fatal, leaving grieving family members to adjust to their loss. In many cases, most of damage from a brain injury comes from the initial trauma, or the primary injury. However, up to forty percent of traumatic brain injury (TBI) patients suffer a deterioration, rather than improvement, of their conditions in the days and weeks following the injury. This deterioration is often attributed to secondary brain injury.

Primary Brain Injury

At the initial point of impact or trauma, any direct damage to the brain is known as the primary injury. A primary injury may be focal or diffuse. A focal damage occurs when a specific portion of the brain is injured, as in blunt force injuries or penetrating injuries. Diffuse damage, including concussion or axonal shearing (nerve damage), most frequently occurs from acceleration-deceleration forces. The primary injury is the one that occurs as a direct result of the trauma. Common primary injuries include:

  • Diffuse axonal injury
  • Cerebral contusions or lacerations
  • Open head injury or penetrating injury
  • Skull fracture
  • Intracranial hematoma

During initial emergency care, treatment of the primary injury is paramount. Primary brain injury can result in immediate death or disability; however, once a patient’s condition is stabilized, physicians should be aware of the risk of secondary injury, which can lead to a deterioration of the injured person’s condition. If this has happened to you or a loved one, feel free to contact one of our primary brain injury lawyers.

Secondary Brain Injury

Secondary injuries are those which occur in the hours or days following the initial impact or trauma. These injuries are not a direct result of the impact, but their occurrence can have equally damaging outcomes. Many secondary injuries are both preventable and reversible with appropriate care. Secondary or indirect injuries evolve over time and include:

  • Edema or swelling of the brain
  • Intracranial pressure
  • Epilepsy
  • Infection or fever
  • Blood clots or hematoma
  • Ischemia or insufficient blood flow
  • Hypoxia or insufficient oxygen to the brain
  • Hypertension or high blood pressure
  • Hypotension or low blood pressure

Ischemia is one of the most dangerous secondary brain injuries, and is often caused by increased intracranial pressure following a traumatic brain injury. Symptoms of ischemia include headache, loss of consciousness, and ipsilateral (on the same side as the injury) fixed dilated pupil. If intracranial pressure and ischemia are not quickly addressed, the results are often fatal. However, with appropriate care, damage from secondary injuries may be reversed. If a loved one, or yourself, has suffered such an injury – contact a secondary brain injury attorney today.

Personal Injury Attorneys Representing Victims of Serious Head Injury

Traumatic brain injury can leave an injured accident victim or assault victim with permanent impairment resulting from primary or secondary injury:

  • Cognitive impairment – loss of memory, attention disorders, difficulty processing information, and executive function impairment
  • Motor function impairment – paralysis, spasticity, loss of balance, decreased strength
  • Sensory impairment – loss of hearing, noise sensitivity, tinnitus, loss of vision, blurred vision, double vision, blind spots
  • Social, emotional, or behavioral impairment – impulsivity, aggression, depression, mood swings

Adjusting to the permanent effects of a traumatic brain injury can be physically and emotionally taxing for injured accident victims and their families. The expense of medical care, rehabilitation, and assistive therapies can ruin the financial stability of those dealing with a traumatic brain injury. If the injury was caused by another person’s recklessness, negligence, or malice, TBI victims have the right to pursue compensation from those liable for the injury. A DC primary and secondary brain injury attorney can represent injured victims and their families in a personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death suit to help them get the compensation they need and deserve for maximum recovery.