Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) can be caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head. Car crashes and falls are the leading causes of TBI. A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury. Whiplash or rotational movement during a car crash or fall can cause a serious brain injury even though the head does not strike a fixed object. See the video of how a car wreck can result in a TBI at Brainline.org. This is because the matter of the brain is composed of different types of tissue (with different weights and mass) that will move against each other during the rapid movement of the head during a collision or fall. This can cause microscopic shearing or tearing in the axons that make up the white matter of the brain – an injury called diffuse axonal injury or DAI.
A tiny sized injury to the brain can have huge effects a person’s life – interfering with their memory, thought processing, judgment and function. TBI is a very serious injury that we are recognizing and learning more about in part because of the attention being focused on the problems of professional football players and concussions. We now recognize that even a minor impact in a car accident can result in a TBI which completely changes a persons ability to concentrate, work, care for themselves, control their emotions and interact with other people. TBI can be classified as mild, moderate or severe based on medical factors such as loss of consciousness – but that classification is not designed as a measure of the effects of the injury. Most people (90%) recover fully from a mild TBI – but the other 10%, sometime labeled the “miserable minority,” can have significant disabling effects for many years to come. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that at least 5.3 million Americans currently need assistance with daily activities as a result of traumatic brain injury. Get the CDC guide on mild TBI here.
Families of victims of traumatic brain injury need are often confronted with the effects of this devastating injury. The victim may look fine on the outside. No one understands why they seem unfocused, confused and irritable. A TBI can result in the victim needing assistance with making decisions, handling their finances, emotional outbursts, depression and memory problems.
The recent wars in the middle east have also brought a lot of attention to TBI research. The use of IED – improvised explosive devices – have resulted in thousands of soldiers sustaining TBI injuries as a result of the shock wave and forces of a blast. Department of Defense research, coupled with technological advancements in imaging such as diffusion tensor imaging, have given us new insights into the fascinating world of the human brain.
TBI cases present special challenges in legal claims. Even though it is well documented in medical literature that TBI’s usually do not show up on a standard CT or MRI images – insurance company adjusters and lawyers will often attempt to deny a person has a TBI and point to a clean CT or MRI scan. They have relationships with specific doctors who they pay a lot of money and who can be counted on to testify that the victim does not have a brain injury – often without even meeting or examining the patient, and despite what the person’s treating doctors have found. Also, insurance companies will hire a small group of biomechanics engineers who make their living testifying for insurance companies that the g-forces in a particular accident where not great enough to result in a TBI. (They will base this medically unsupported conclusion in part on studies of NFL football players – which we now know were falsified and resulted in the resignation of the NFL doctors who conducted the study). Even though that tactic is misleading and dishonest – they will use it when they can get away with it, even though many courts have caught on to this junk science and will refuse to let those so-called “experts” testify – if properly challenged by an experienced brain injury attorney.
The lawyers at Kern Lewis Law have significant experience in cases involving traumatic brain injuries. We have assembled the special expertise and experience needed to fight the insurance companies hired gun engineers and doctors head on — exposing their deceptive tactics and scientifically untrue arguments. We also can assist family members in finding the resources to help them deal with this potentially life changing injury. in fact, we are often hired or consulted by other lawyers for our experience and proven track-record in brain injury cases. In just the last five years alone, the lawyers of Kern Lewis Law group have recovered millions of dollars in cases involving traumatic brain injuries.