Charleston Catastrophic Injury Lawyer

An injury becomes catastrophic when the consequences are particularly extreme or severe, usually involving long-term issues and having a life-changing impact. The effects can be permanent or may last several years and require extensive medical care and treatment, and anybody dealing with a catastrophic injury after an accident that was the result of another person’s negligence should be sure to begin working with a Charleston catastrophic injuries attorney.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that there was about 223,135 traumatic brain injury (TBI)-related hospitalizations and 64,362 TBI-related deaths during the most recent study period,  representing over 611 TBI-related hospitalizations and 176 TBI-related deaths per day. The National Spinal Cord Injury Statistical Center (NSCISC) reports that there are about 17,730 new spinal cord injury cases every year, with an annual incidence of spinal cord injury being about 54 cases for every one million people in the United States.

Causes of Catastrophic Injuries

People can suffer catastrophic injuries in a wide variety of situations. Catastrophic injuries are possible even in situations in which victims might not seem to face any extreme conditions.

The most frequent causes of catastrophic injuries include, but are not limited to:

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Truck accidents
  • 18-wheeler accidents
  • Motorcycle accidents
  • Bus accidents
  • Bicycle accidents
  • Train accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Construction site accidents
  • Maritime and offshore accidents
  • Workplace accidents
  • Medical malpractice
  • Gas explosions
  • Dog bites 
  • Premises liability accidents
  • Product liability accidents
  • Defective medical devices
  • Food poisoning
  • Fire and explosion accidents
  • Swimming pool accidents
  • Nursing home negligence and abuse

Types of Catastrophic Injuries

People may suffer any one of many different kinds of catastrophic injuries. An injury is again catastrophic when it has the potential to have a lifelong impact on a victim.

Types of catastrophic injuries often include, but are not limited to:

  • Fractures or broken bones Some fractures do not need much time to heal, but other types of fractures can require surgeries or cause long-term disabilities. Serious fractures can require reconstructive surgery and possibly the insertion of pins, plates, and screws, also requiring longer hospital stays, rehabilitation, and sometimes additional surgeries. 
  • Closed head injuries – Closed head injuries refer to trauma to the head that does not cause a break in the skull. A brain and soft tissue can still suffer damage that leads to bleeding and swelling inside the head. Mild closed head injuries may involve treatment requiring mental and physical rest, but a moderate or severe closed head injury can require emergency care, including supportive care, such as oxygen, IV fluids, and nutrition therapy. 
  • Back injuries – Back injuries can include sprains and strains, fractured vertebrae, thoracic spine injuries in the mid-back, chest, and rib area, herniated or bulging discs, lumbar spine or lower back injuries, cervical fractures, herniated discs, cervical dislocation, spondylolisthesis, muscle tension, cervical radiculopathy, and spinal stenosis. Back injuries can also lead to an increased risk of musculoskeletal disorders affecting the movement of the entire body’s musculoskeletal system. 
  • Leg injuries – Some leg injuries may be fractures or broken bones, and tibias are among the most frequently injured, with dislocations involving bones pulling out of joints, sprains involving stretches and tears of ligaments, and strains involving stretches and tears of muscles also being common. Myositis ossificans can be the result of severe and repeated trauma, with hamstring or quadriceps muscle strains or femoral fractures also possible. 
  • Neck injuries – Types of neck injuries can include ruptured discs, broken or fractured necks, nerve compression, herniated discs, or radiculopathy. Neck injuries not only cause severe discomfort and pain for victims, but various medications, physical therapy, and possibly even surgery might be necessary. 
  • Internal injuries –An internal organ injury can be dangerous because a failure to treat such injuries immediately can cause serious complications or even death. Some of the kinds of internal injuries can include brain bleeds, broken ribs, pneumothorax involving a rib puncturing a lung, abdominal aorta aneurysms involving the stomach being compressed during an accident and causing a rupture of the abdominal aorta, ruptured spleens, internal bleeding, or other internal organ injuries.
  • Skull fractures Johns Hopkins Medicine specifies that the four major types of skull fractures include linear skull fractures, the most common kinds of skull fractures involving breaks in the bone but not requiring interventions, depressed skull fractures involving part of the skull actually being sunken in from trauma and possibly requiring surgical intervention, diastatic skull fractures involving widenings of normal suture lines, and basilar skull fractures that represent the most serious types of skull fractures and involve breaks in bones at the base of the skull. 
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) – A TBI is a brain injury stemming from a sudden trauma causing damage to the brain. TBI symptoms may be either mild, moderate, or severe. About half of severely head-injured TBI patients will require surgery to remove or repair hematomas (ruptured blood vessels) or contusions (bruised brain tissue). TBI victims can suffer from problems with cognition (thinking, memory, and reasoning), sensory processing (sight, hearing, touch, taste, and smell), communication (expression and understanding), and behavior or mental health (depression, anxiety, personality changes, aggression, acting out, and social inappropriateness). Certain cases can also involve intracranial hematoma (ICH), meaning several types of blood clots in or around the brain. 
  • Spinal cord injuries – Spinal cord injuries are damage to the bundle of cells and nerves that send and receive certain signals from the brain to and from the rest of the body. Spinal cord injuries can be the result of direct injuries to the spinal cord itself or damage to tissue and bones (vertebrae) surrounding the spinal cord. Damage can result in temporary or permanent changes in sensation, movement, strength, and body functions below the site of an injury. Incomplete spinal cord injuries refer to spinal cords still being able to transmit messages to and from a brain to the rest of the body, but complete spinal cord injuries involve no nerve communication and motor function (voluntary movement) below the site where the trauma occurred. 
  • Permanent nerve injuries – The peripheral nerves that send messages from your brain and spinal cord to the rest of your body consist of fibers called axons insulated by surrounding tissues. A nerve injury may affect the brain’s ability to communicate with muscles and organs, and damage to peripheral nerves will be known as peripheral neuropathy. 
  • Amputations – An amputation is the removal of a limb from trauma, medical illness, or surgery. This surgical measure is usually to control pain or a disease process in an affected limb. 
  • Paralysis – Paralysis refers to the loss of ability to move a portion or all of the body. Paralysis can affect any part of the body, including a person’s face, hands, one side of the body (hemiplegia), one arm or leg (monoplegia), both legs (paraplegia), or both arms and legs (tetraplegia or quadriplegia). 
  • Severe burn injuries – Serious burn injuries can require first aid and wound assessment, with treatment involving medications, wound dressings, therapy, and surgery. Some victims may also require treatment at specialized burn centers for skin grafts to cover large wounds. Medical care can also include medications and products such as water-based treatments to clean and stimulate the wound tissue, intravenous (IV) fluids to prevent dehydration, pain and anxiety medications such as morphine, burn creams and ointments such as bacitracin and silver sulfadiazine (Silvadene) for wound healing, specialty wound dressings to prepare a wound to heal, drugs intended to fight infection, and tetanus shots. 

Call Us Today to Schedule a Free Consultation with a Charleston Catastrophic Injuries Attorney

If you or your loved one suffer catastrophic injuries in any kind of accident that was the result of another party’s negligence, you can be entitled to compensation for all of your losses. You will want to be sure you get in touch with Cary Law Office for help recovering every last dollar that is available to you.

Our firm fully understands all of the challenges that catastrophic injury victims are currently facing and will be facing for the remainder of their lives, so we will know how to fight to make sure that you can get the fullest possible recovery. Call (304) 804-6369 or contact us online to arrange a free consultation to look at the details of your case and determine whether you have a claim.