Mon 20 May 2024

Action for Brain Injury Week: Understanding Head Injuries

Headway is a UK-wide charity which aims to improve the lives of those who have suffered from a brain injury by providing support and information services. Each year, Headway organises Action for Brain Injury Week (ABI Week), with the aim of raising awareness for brain injury survivors to ensure they receive the enhanced support they deserve.

Head Injuries

There is a wide range of head injuries; the most serious examples include skull fractures, open wounds or permanent brain damage with a lifelong or fatal consequence. At the other end of the scale, the term 'head injury' can equally be applied to a minor concussion or superficial head wound with moderate swelling or skin breakage.  Despite these injuries appearing to be less serious, scientists at Cambridge University have recently reported that even a mild knock can cause long-lasting brain damage, with 45% of patients suffering symptoms at least six months following a mild concussion, also known as a mild traumatic brain injury.

Head injuries can be especially worrying because the symptoms of long-term brain damage may not be immediately obvious after the harm is first caused. In some cases, the effects of a head injury will take many years to develop fully.

If you or someone you know has suffered a head injury, it is important to make sure that the symptoms have been fully investigated. In some cases, the injury will resolve entirely in a short period of time. In other cases, the symptoms might get worse, and you will need to think about what help and support you will need in the future to maximise your quality of life.

Causes of Head Injury

Head injuries can be caused by a wide range of different accidents and circumstances. In many cases a head injury will be caused by a road traffic accident, an accident in the workplace, a sporting injury, a criminal assault, or even from a fall.

People can also suffer a head injury as a result of medical negligence. For example, a doctor may have prescribed the wrong medication, or the wrong amount of medication over a long period of time. If mistakes are made during childbirth which result in a lack of oxygen supply, that can lead to brain injury. In some cases, these mistakes will have an impact on brain function and can lead to difficulties with memory and motor skills.

Sometimes, errors made by doctors during childbirth can lead to the development of a condition called Cerebral Palsy. Cerebral Palsy is a specific kind of brain damage that occurs in children up to the age of 5, but the symptoms of injury are lifelong.

You may be entitled to compensation as a result of medical negligence following a delay in diagnosis or treatment. For instance, the delay in diagnosis or treatment of a brain aneurysm can lead to serious, life altering consequences. An aneurysm is a bulge in a blood vessel caused by weakness in the blood vessel wall. If the aneurysm ruptures, it can cause a haemorrhage which can lead to extensive brain damage. The symptoms of an aneurysm (headache, vomiting, stiff neck, blurred vision) are often attributed to other conditions, meaning that many times there is a delay in diagnosis and treatment. Untreated aneurysms can lead to extensive brain damage, and in many cases, death. If medical professionals were at fault, you may be entitled to compensation.

Compensation for a Head Injury

If you or someone you know has been affected by a head injury, you may be entitled to compensation to cover medical costs, loss of earnings and the cost of adaptations you might need to make to your home. You may also be entitled to compensation for the pain and distress of having suffered an injury that wasn't your fault.

The potential value of a claim for a head injury will depend on the severity of the injury, the recovery time and the lasting effects.

Our Compensation Calculator illustrates the different categories of head injury, and the amount of compensation that may be payable to you, depending on the severity of the injury. These figures are based on previous decisions made by the Courts in Scotland, although the precise value of each case will depend on its own unique facts.

Morton Fraser MacRoberts' Personal Injury Team has extensive experience in pursuing all types of claims and we can provide you with advice on who is liable to pay compensation once we have discussed the facts and circumstances of your claim.

At Morton Fraser MacRoberts, we will ensure we maximise the compensation you are entitled to. Our experienced Personal Injury team will take the time to get to know you, assess your claim and support you in recovering compensation. Contact us today on 0131 247 1000 or through our personal injury compensation enquiry form.

Make an Enquiry

From our offices we serve the whole of Scotland, as well as clients around the world with interests in Scotland. Please complete the form below, and a member of our team will be in touch shortly.

Morton Fraser MacRoberts LLP will use the information you provide to contact you about your inquiry. The information is confidential. For more information on our privacy practices please see our Privacy Notice