One of the injuries that is of greatest concern for those involved in a truck wreck is a brain injury. While severe brain injuries are easy to identify, mild traumatic brain injuries are not. Explaining the way the brain was injured, and proving to a jury the long term impact of having a brain injury when the victim looks normal, requires training and expertise. I previously blogged on the requirements a competent trucking lawyer should have but I neglected including expertise in handling brain injuries.
Please keep in mind that even though doctors will frequently use the term "mild" to describe many brain injuries, there is nothing mild about brain damage. The use of "mild" by a doctor only means that the person isn’ t dead or in a coma. If someones brain is damaged, they have lost their future. They may have memory problems that will have caused them to lose their past. They will never be everything they could have been, even if they do everything they can to try to recover.
Mild brain injuries typically occur from a wave effect. The brain is like jello, made up primarily of water and is encased in one of the hardest bones in the body, the skull. Because the brain is somewhat fluid, in a wreck it can move and strike the skull. The cells are torn under the forces involved in a wreck. Current medical science makes it clear that it is not necessary for the head to have hit anything in order for brain damage to occur.
Personalities change, memory becomes a problem, frustration and anger are not uncommon. The victim however is able to talk. They don’t want to admit anything is wrong, and the family is just so happy for the victim to be alive that they blame the changes on other problems. A questionnaire can help experts determine whether there is a mild traumatic brain injury such as the one that can be downloaded here: Symptom Questionnaire.
If you think someone you love has had some of the changes discussed above have them tested by a neuropsychologist. These are the trained professionals best able to determine whether or not a mild traumatic brain injury has occurred.