Anoxic Brain Injuries
Just like any other tissue or organs in the human body, the brain needs a constant supply of oxygen to ensure proper functioning. If the oxygen supply is cut off from the brain for a period of time, a person may experience severe effects. After four minutes without oxygen (anoxia) or with the oxygen supply significantly limited (hypoxia), tissue in the brain may begin to die. After five minutes with little to no oxygen, a victim will likely sustain very serious and permanent damage.
Common reasons why anoxic events occur
Many health conditions can cause an anoxic event, including heart attack, stroke, anemia, lung disease, and more. Often, these health issues are no one’s fault and you will be responsible (with your health insurance) of covering your losses for your anoxic event. However, in other cases, a victim may sustain an anoxic TBI in an accident or incident caused by another person or party. Some of these cases regularly involve the following:
- Inhalation or swallowing of toxic substances or chemicals
- Electrocution or electric shock
- Carbon monoxide poisoning2
- Taking certain drugs
How an anoxic event can affect you
In many cases, a victim of an anoxic event will not survive. Even if they do live through the injury, they may remain unconscious in a coma for an extended period of time or even permanently. Even if they do wake up, there may be serious interruption on their normal brain functioning and some victims of anoxic TBI stay in a persistent vegetative state for the rest of their lives. In this state, they can involuntarily react to sounds or sights, but cannot have a conversation or care from themselves.
If an anoxia victim does survive ad wake up, they will face a lengthy road to recovery from their injury. Victims may have to live with the following effects, among others:
- Memory loss
- Challenger with cognitive processing at work or in school
- Decreased reasoning and judgment abilities
- Indecisiveness or impulsiveness
- Trouble learning new things or following directions
- Hearing or vision impairments
- Emotional issues
- Spasms or seizures
- Trouble walking, standing, or other types of physical movement
- Significant changes in personality
- Mood disorders
If the anoxia was for a relatively short period of time, the symptoms may still be severe at first, but may taper off over a month or so. Other victims have long-lasting effects, however, and may not be able to work or live on their own for an extended period of time or ever again in the future. Some victims are never able to leave the hospital. Treatment may focus on coping mechanisms to deal with new-found disabilities or could simply involve keeping a victim comfortable while they are in a persistent vegetative state. The losses sustained will depend on the exact severity of the anoxic event and the lingering symptoms.
Contact a qualified brain injury attorney in Tampa Bay as soon as possible
If you or someone you love has been the victim of a traumatic brain injury due to an anoxic event, you should not delay in discussing your situation with an experienced Tampa Bay, Florida brain injury lawyer. The highly experienced legal team at the Dolman Law Group has helped many brain injury victims obtain compensation for their injuries. We also represent family members of victims when the victim has died from their injuries or is permanently incapacitated and unable to make their own decisions.
Every brain injury case is different and proving negligence in cases of anoxic events can be complex. Our brain injury attorneys know how to handle this type of complicated case and to hold any negligent parties fully accountable under the law. We will negotiate to try to obtain a favorable settlement offer and will provide zealous representation at trial if needed. If you believe that a negligent party is responsible for an anoxic brain injury, please do not hesitate to call our office at 727-451-6900 for a free consultation today.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756