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Death or disability from traumatic brain injury

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that traumatic brain injury accounts for nearly one-third of all injury deaths in the United States. People who survive such an injury face long-term disabilities, such as cognitive impairment, limited movement, problems with vision or hearing, personality changes and depression.

The CDC defines a TBI as a head injury that impairs the normal function of the brain. These can be caused by a bump or blow to the head or by a penetrating injury. The severity of TBI ranges from mild, involving a brief change in mental status or loss of consciousness, to severe, involving an extended period of unconsciousness or memory loss. Concussions are considered an example of a mild TBI.

The leading causes of TBI are falls, being hit by an object and motor vehicle accidents. Senior citizens are more likely to die as a result of TBI, and men are more likely to die or require hospitalization from TBI than women.

When people are involved in injury-causing accidents, they turn to personal injury attorneys to pursue the responsible parties. Attorneys in New York rely on investigative evidence to reconstruct the accident that caused the injury and to construct a clear picture of liability. They study information such as police reports and eyewitness statements from the scene of the incident, medical records and forensic reports.

In a case where a person has suffered a TBI as a result of a fall or motor vehicle accident, attorneys pinpoint liability by assessing whose negligence caused the injury. For example, in a motor vehicle accident, a driver can be deemed liable if it can be proven that he or she was negligent due to distraction from a cell phone or the influence of drugs or alcohol. In a fall, negligence can be attributed to those who are responsible for maintaining safe conditions.

Source: CDC, "Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Fact Sheet", October 22, 2014

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