What are Catastrophic Injuries?
Written by Greg on October 25, 2019
Every year, thousands of accidents happen on our nation’s roads. Luckily, most of the accidents that occur are minor fender-benders with minimal injuries. In some cases, however, the injuries might be severe and life-threatening or catastrophic. Catastrophic injuries are those that permanently prevent someone from working. This type of injury is so serious that it often dramatically impacts a person’s life, rendering a victim disabled.
Catastrophic injuries are those that might severely limit someone’s ability to function normally. Some examples of catastrophic injuries include traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. The victim may lose functioning and might even need to be connected to a machine for support. If you or a loved one suffered a catastrophic injury in an accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your damages.
How is Catastrophic Injury Claims Different?
When you file a claim for an injury, you usually do so after you recover. However, catastrophic injuries are different because you might never fully return to the same level of health as you had prior to the accident. Because the injuries are severe, your medical treatment is likely extensive and ongoing, and your bills might be astronomical. Many times, you might have to go through multiple surgeries and extensive rehabilitation. You may also require ongoing medical care for an extended period of time, and you might need to use devices and equipment.
All of these treatments and care are extremely expensive. In addition, you are probably unable to work and should be entitled to compensation for lost wages. Catastrophic injuries are also emotionally stressful for you and your family. You might be owed money for the emotional pain and suffering that you sustained due to the catastrophic injury.
Types of Catastrophic Injuries
The American Medical Association, AMA, defines a catastrophic injury as a severe injury to the spine, spinal cord, or brain, and it could also include fractures to the skull or spine. These injuries are severe, life-threatening, and debilitating, and may impact you for the rest of your life. In addition to spinal and brain injuries, for purposes of a legal claim, other types of injuries may also be included. Some of these are severe burns, amputations, blindness, disfigurement, and hearing loss. Generally, a patient who suffers a catastrophic injury will need to establish a life care plan. This document includes what care will be necessary, how the patient’s home will need to be adapted, how the patient will achieve mobility, outlines medical supplies, equipment and devices the patient will need, and more. The plan should include information from medical professionals about the testing, surgeries, rehabilitation, counseling and educational services that the patient will need throughout his or her life. The life care plan is developed with input from a variety of professionals and may need to be reviewed and updated from time to time.
If you or a loved one suffered a catastrophic injury, the negligent party may owe you money for your damages. You might be owed money for your medical expenses, future care, lost wages, loss of consortium, pain, and suffering, and more. Contact our catastrophic injury lawyers at 281-587-1111!