There is a reason why hardhats are required on many worksites. Traumatic brain injuries are a tragically common result of workplace accidents. That can be true even when a worker wears protective headgear like a hardhat.
A traumatic brain injury (commonly referred to as TBI) can significantly affect many cognitive (thinking), physical, and psychological abilities. If you have suffered a TBI while at work, you are likely entitled to workers’ compensation benefits to help offset your lost wages and pay for your medical treatment and rehabilitation. Depending on the circumstances, you may also be able to bring a claim for additional compensation if a third party (someone other than your employer and co-workers) was at fault for your accident.
Are you ready to find out more about your legal right to compensation for an on-the-job head injury? Contact the experienced Indiana workplace brain injury lawyers at Klezmer Maudlin, PC, now.
Randy Klezmer and Nathan Maudlin founded the law firm in 1992 to help Indiana workers who have suffered serious injuries in workplace accidents. Randy and Nathan stand up for injured workers and fight to get them the compensation they need and deserve.
We want to hear the details about how your brain injury happened. We can investigate the circumstances of your accident to see whether you may have a claim for workers’ compensation benefit, as well as the potential for a third-party claim. Our firm has the resources, skills and grit necessary to pursue all potential sources of recovery on your behalf. We take pride in treating our clients like family as we work hard to get results for them.
Causes of Brain Injuries at Indiana Workplaces
Brain injuries can occur in many ways. Traumatic brain injuries typically result from accidents in which the head strikes an object. Most traumatic brain injuries result in widespread damage to the brain because the brain ricochets inside the skull during the impact of an accident. Diffuse axonal injury (DAI) occurs when the nerve cells are torn from one another. Localized damage also occurs when the brain bounces against the skull. The brain stem, frontal lobe, and temporal lobes are particularly vulnerable to this because of their location near bony protrusions.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that falls cause about a third of all traumatic brain injuries at work. Other common causes include car crashes, assaults and contact with objects or equipment. Construction workers suffered more TBIs than workers in any other field.
According to the CDC, the top causes of TBI include:
- Falls – Falls account for about of 35 percent of TBI cases. These kinds of accidents include both falls from a higher level (falling off a ladder, for example), as well as falls on the same level (tripping over an extension cord and hitting your head on the floor, for example).
- Car accidents – Crashes are responsible for the greatest number of TBI-related deaths. Overall, traffic accidents are the second leading cause of brain injuries in the U.S.
- Struck by or against an object – Another major cause of TBI is striking your head against an object (for example, an exposed pipe) or being struck in the head by an object (for example, a tool dropped from a platform above).
Symptoms of a TBI after a Workplace Accident
Brain injuries are sometimes described as “silent injuries” because they may not show obvious symptoms immediately after an accident. That means it is critical to be watchful for subtle indications of a potential brain injuries anytime you hit your head in an accident.
Symptoms of a severe TBI may include:
- Loss of consciousness (knocked out) for several minutes to hours or more
- Seizures or convulsions
- Dilated pupils in one or both eyes
- Clear fluid draining from the ears or nose
- Strange behavior (aggression, agitation)
- Trouble talking
- Not waking up from sleep
- Numbness or weakness in the toes and the fingers
- Impaired coordination (being clumsy)
- A headache that is severe or doesn’t go away
- Continuous vomiting or nausea
Some potential indications of a less-severe brain injury may include:
- Loss of consciousness for a few seconds or minutes
- Feeling dazed, disoriented or confused
- Trouble remembering things
- Trouble with concentration
- Feeling off-balance or dizzy
- Vomiting or nausea
- Blurry eyesight
- Ringing in the ears
- A bad taste in the mouth or other unusual senses
- Problems with mood or attitude
- Trouble sleeping
TBI Treatments and Lasting Impairments
Regardless of whether a TBI is classified as “severe” or “mild,” brain damage usually causes a significant change in the victim’s life. In most cases, the impairment from a TBI doesn’t get better because the brain doesn’t heal like other parts of the body.
The treatment for TBI often concentrates on preventing a secondary injury caused by the swelling of the brain inside the skull, which can cause additional brain damage. Once damage has been done, most patients face months, years or even a lifetime of rehabilitation to help them cope with their TBI.
The most severe brain injuries can cause a coma, an unresponsive state or a persistent vegetative state. Less severe TBIs cause less severe impairment in most cases. However, these impairments can still have a dramatic effect on a victim’s life.
Examples of ongoing impairment from TBI include:
- Problems with thinking, memory and reasoning
- Hearing and eyesight problems
- Changes to the sense of taste and smell
- Personality changes
- Problems with speaking and understanding what others say
- Difficulty reading and writing
Legal Advocacy for Your Indiana Workplace Brain Injury
Since 1992, the experienced workplace accident lawyers at Klezmer Mauldin have concentrated their practice on helping people who have been hurt at work in Indiana. If you or a loved one has suffered a TBI on the job, let Randy Klezmer and Nathan Maudlin put their experience to work on your behalf.
Here are just a few examples of actions our lawyers can take to help you:
- Fully and independently investigate your traumatic brain injury to uncover what actually caused the accident and what kinds of compensation may be available.
- Work with medical, financial and other experts to calculate the full extent of your losses.
- Help you seek the workers’ compensation benefits you deserve.
- Determine whether a third-party liability claim may be an option for you.
- Stand up for your best interests at the negotiating table and in court if necessary.
Cases involving serious injuries like TBIs are never simple. The lawyers at Klezmer Maudlin have the experience, resources and resolve to help get you the compensation you deserve for a job-related brain injury. Contact us now for a free claim review and legal advice about your best options.