West Virginia Personal Injury Lawyers Work for Victims of Head, Brain, and Neck Injury
Injuries common in many accidents may not be detected immediately
Head, brain, and neck trauma sustained in trips, slips, falls, automobile, motorcycle, and trucking accidents are sometimes overlooked by both the victim and first responders. For example, if someone involved in an auto accident did not appear to suffer facial and skull injuries, or was able to walk, talk, and exchange license and insurance information at an accident scene, first responders might assume that he or she was merely “shaken up” but otherwise unhurt. The victim may even believe this as well, since he or she was able to function normally at the time. Often it is only afterward, when signs and symptoms of brain or neck injury begin to appear, that they consider seeking medical attention.
Paulson & Nace, PLLC, our family of personal injury lawyers, knows how serious even so-called “mild head injury” (commonly called whiplash) can be. We know the effects they may have, not only on your ability to function, but also on your family and dependents, both emotionally and financially. Our West Virginia personal injury lawyers have been helping families recover damages against those whose negligence caused their injuries for decades. We also protect them against attempts by insurance companies and claims adjusters to bully them into premature settlements. If you or a loved one has suffered head or neck trauma and associated brain injury, we can help you too.
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) in West Virginia
TBI occurs when a severe, violent blow to the head causes jarring of the brain against the inside of the skull, or when a depressed fracture of the skull causes a bone fragment to penetrate the brain. These types of injuries can cause bleeding or swelling of the brain, as well as damage to the nerve cells, disrupting the brain’s communication with the rest of the body. TBIs can affect behavior, speech, sensation, and movement. Some people recover from them without lasting effects, but others may suffer permanent disability or death. The outcome typically depends on the injury’s location. People who survive severe TBIs often need physical therapy and rehabilitation. Brain injuries include:
- Concussion. This is a jarring injury to the brain. Many times it does not involve loss of consciousness; however, a person who has a concussion may feel dazed and may have impaired vision or balance for a while after the injury.
- Brain contusion. This is a bruise of the brain, with some bleeding that causes swelling.
- Depressed skull fracture. When an impact causes the skull to crack, the edges of broken skull bones cut into the brain causing tissue injury and bleeding.
- Intracranial hematoma is bleeding anywhere inside the skull that collects and clots. A mass of clotted blood forms within brain tissue, or more often in between the brain and the skull. An intracranial hematoma may not be apparent for a day or even as long as several weeks. Its symptoms include listlessness, headache, balance problems, or vomiting.
- A scalp or facial hematoma is bleeding outside the skull that collects and clots, often forming a firm lump on the scalp or forehead.
TBIs most often occur during automobile, motorcycle, and trucking accidents, and less frequently during slips and falls. Even when they are not immediately life threatening, TBIs can have serious effects on a person’s physical, cognitive, and emotional capacities. They should always be taken seriously because, when left untreated or ignored, an injury and its symptoms can intensify over time.
Neck injuries in West Virginia
The most common cause of traumatic neck injury is whiplash. Suffered most frequently by victims of automobile accidents, whiplash is an injury to the cervical spine caused by rapid acceleration and deceleration of the head. When a car is struck from behind by a fast-moving vehicle, its driver’s entire body is quickly pushed forward while the head remains behind for a moment. The head then rocks up and back, stretching or tearing the neck’s ligaments, tendons, and muscles. As the muscles re-stabilize the neck, they bring the head forward, a motion that frequently moves it past its normal range of forward motion. This further tears or stretches the surrounding ligaments, tendons, and muscles, potentially damaging the cervical vertebrae. While whiplash injuries generally occur in rear-end impact collisions, they can occur in any type of motor vehicle impact in which the neck goes through an abnormal range of motion.
Whiplash results in serious injury in cases in which the force of impact causes the vertebrae to dislodge and put pressure on the spinal cord. It also occurs in cases in which the lower portion of the brain herniates through the foramen magnum, the opening at the base of the skull, through which the spinal cord also passes. In extreme cases, the spinal cord can be severely injured or even severed.
Aggressive advocacy for head, neck, and brain injury victims in West Virginia
Head, neck, and brain injuries disrupt more than your body. They can cause serious behavioral changes, including post-traumatic stress syndrome, that disrupt your employment and your relationships with friends and family. Paulson & Nace, PLLC’s distinguished family of West Virginia personal injury attorneys offers the compassionate and professional attention you deserve. We are widely recognized throughout the state for our comprehensive legal services and our aggressive advocacy for victims of head, neck, and brain injury. When you choose a personal injury lawyer from our practice to represent you, you are choosing a team that values families and family relationships. Please call 304-741-8079 or fill out our contact form to tell us your story in a no-obligation consultation. Our office is located at 3501 Maccorkle Ave SE, Charleston, WV 25304.
We have dedicated our lives to helping victims of injury. Now, let our family help you and yours.