New York Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

Traumatic brain injuries can cause lasting effects on an accident victim’s physical, intellectual and emotional state, with lifelong consequences including long-term medical care and rehabilitation and the inability to return to work and normal life activities.

The Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyers at the Jacob Fuchsberg Law Firm have three generations of experience helping accident victims recover, and understand the unique challenges and impact a serious injury has on the lives of our clients and their loved ones.

If you or a loved one have suffered due to a brain injury, let our family help yours. Contact us online or call 212-869-3500 for a no risk, no fee attorney consultation to discuss your legal options and next steps.

What is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a grave, life altering brain injury caused by an external head trauma, violent movement of the skull or deprivation of oxygen to the brain. They are most commonly seen as a result of motor vehicle crashes, medical malpractice, falls, and construction accidents. Many individuals who suffer a TBI will require costly medical care and rehabilitation and will face lifelong impairments related to their brain injuries.

Common Symptoms of a Traumatic Brain Injury

TBIs are often referred to as “invisible injuries” since the symptoms are often subtle and may not be immediately apparent following the incident or head injury. The following symptoms may be associated with a traumatic brain injury: 

    • Loss of consciousness

    • Confusion and disorientation

    • Memory loss / amnesia

    • Fatigue

    • Headaches

    • Visual problems

    • Poor attention / concentration

    • Sleep disturbances

    • Dizziness / loss of balance

    • Irritability / emotional disturbances

    • Feelings of depression

    • Seizures

    • Vomiting

Assessing the Extent of a Head Injury Following an Accident

Immediately following an accident, a person who has suffered a brain injury should be brought to the emergency room, where doctors can assess the extent of the injury. Doctors will often use what is known as the Glasgow Coma Score (GCS) to assess the patient’s level of consciousness and classify a brain injury as mild, moderate, or severe.

However, not all individuals will experience loss of consciousness or display symptoms that indicate a serious brain injury has occurred. At first, a person may appear fine, but their condition may rapidly deteriorate as the brain undergoes a delayed trauma, bleeds, and swells.

This is known as the secondary injury, which can often be more damaging than the initial injury or impact as the swelling and bleeding causes injury to parts of the brain which were not initially injured.

A person will likely need to undergo a PET or CAT scan to determine if there was injury to the brain. However, even these high-tech evaluations may not be able to detect brain injury. To determine the true extent of the brain injury, in most cases, an individual will require psychological and neuropsychological tests to accurately assess the impact of the brain trauma on his or her cognitive, intellectual and behavioral functioning.

How Does a TBI Affect Accident Victims?

TBIs can cause permanent impairments to an accident victim’s mental, intellectual, and social functioning. The human brain is a complex organ, with each lobe uniquely responsible for different functions. Injury to one or more brain lobes can seriously impact an accident victim’s ability to function at the same level that he or she was able to prior to the accident. In some cases, a TBI may even prevent an individual from carrying out everyday life activities.

Unfortunately, no one is immune to the serious impacts of a TBI. We have seen high-functioning adults, such as business owners and professionals, unable to return to work due to permanent cognitive and intellectual impairments caused by traumatic brain injury.

For children, whose brains have not yet fully developed, the injuries associated with TBIs may forever impact their ability to develop critical executive functioning skills as well as the behavioral skills necessary to fit in among their peers. Oftentimes, children who suffer TBIs may have lifetime difficulties forming relationships and obtaining gainful employment.

Understanding the Different Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries

  • Focal Contusions: bruise to a specific area of the brain usually caused by a blow or jolt to the head from blunt or penetrating trauma. Typically associated with motor vehicle accidents and construction falls.
  • Skull fracture: A penetrating injury from a major impact causes a break in the skull and can lead to substantial injuries including loss of taste or smell.
  • Diffuse Axonal Injury (DAI): is the shearing and tearing of the brain’s long connecting nerve fibers that happens when the brain is injured as it shifts and rotates inside the skull. DAI often results after a motor vehicle accident when the gravitational forces from the impact of the accident causes the individual’s brain to crash back and forth. The changes in the brain are often microscopic and may not be evident during a CAT scan or MRI, making the need for a neuropsychological evaluation even more crucial in order to demonstrate injury.
  • Traumatic Subarachnoid Hemorrhage (TSAH): is the bleeding into the space around the brain. It occurs when the small arteries tear during the initial injury, causing blood to spread over the brain resulting in widespread damage to the brain, including physical and mental disability, lower IQ, and epilepsy. TSAHs are commonly seen adjacent to skull fractures and cerebral contusions, but are often overlooked or missed by doctors. Consequently, such serious brain injuries are frequently associated with medical malpractice injuries.
  • Hypoxia and anoxia: is the result of the brain being damaged by lack of oxygen. These type of brain injuries are most commonly associated with medical malpractice as they result from injuries related to delay in the diagnosis and treatment of stroke or birth injuries, when the baby is not delivered in a proper and timely manner.
  • Locked-in syndrome: is typically caused by a lack of oxygen to the brain or bleeding in the brain as a result of stroke, embolism or blood clot. Locked in syndrome is an extremely frightening condition in which every voluntary muscle in one’s body is paralyzed with the exception of those controlling eye movement. It results from damage to the pons, the part of the brain which controls communication between the brain and the spinal cord. An individual with locked-in syndrome requires 24/7 care to perform activities of daily life for them as well as machines to provide breathing and eating assistance. While the individual’s body is paralyzed, the victim can hear and see everything around them, recognize their family coming to visit, and form coherent thoughts and opinions. However, they are limited in their ability to communicate their thoughts and feelings to others. Locked-in syndrome can result from medical malpractice, and is often associated with delays in treatment related to stroke or pre or post-birthing emergencies.

Our New York Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyers Can Help

When clients sustain traumatic brain injuries as a result of the wrongful or negligent conduct of another, the New York traumatic brain injury lawyers at our firm performs an exhaustive evaluation of the effects of the brain injury.

This evaluation includes working with medical experts, vocational experts, neuropsychologists, and life care planning specialists to ensure that our clients obtain just and proper compensation for their related medical expenses, loss of earnings, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life.

If you or a loved one have suffered due to a brain injury, let our family help yours. Contact us online or call 212-869-3500 for a no risk, no fee attorney consultation to discuss your legal options and next steps.