No one expects a single household chore to end in serious, life-changing injury. However, the lawyers at our firm who work with those who suffer traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) of all kinds understand that many simple actions can have deadly consequences. When it comes to TBIs that often involves falls that occur in and around the house.
For example, SF Gate reported on one man’s struggle to recover after suffering a brain injury. The 71-year old man was working outside of his house last October. He was on a ladder (in his words, a ladder that was “not very good”) when he accidentally fell. He hit his head hard of a rock after the fall. As a result of the fall he ultimately spent three full weeks in a coma. Fortunately, he eventually did wake up, but he was not unscathed. The year since the accident has been a long, drawn-out battle to get back to normal as much as possible
Brain Injury Recovery
For one thing, the man has about five weeks of his life that he simply does not remember–including the fall itself. On top of the mental problems, he had to re-learn virtually all of his basic skills. He notes that, at first, he couldn’t walk and even sitting in a chair was impossible–he couldn’t hold himself up. Essentially everything about his everyday life was difficult.
Making things even more terrifying was the fact that it was not a guarantee that he would ever recover those skills. This is a commonly forgotten part of the recovery process for those experiencing brain injuries. It is easy to read a story of recovery after it is over and understand that hard work gone into getting back together. However, that ignores the immense fear and stress that existed along the way, when recovery was not assured or even likely. The mental and emotional toll that the uncertainty has on the TBi victim (and their family) is hard to fully appreciate out of context.
The man in this case emphasizes the extreme therapy needed to recover. He notes that he has therapy every single day, without exception, for 4 hours a day or more. Even mental challenges like reading and writing were difficult, if not impossible. In the earliest days he couldn’t remember days of the month or other basic facts.
He sums up his recovery, noting that it is still a work in progress: “It took me many, many, many months. My brain is still not where it was when I fell.” Right now, he explains that his main challenges are remembering things–like names of friends or words that he wants to use. It often comes back, but it takes time.
This man’s tale is a reminder of the need to exercise caution even in basic tasks–like household chores. Unfortunately, there are times when an incident will strike that causes severe injury, even when you are careful. That might involve another car driver making a mistake leading to an accident, a product being made defectively, or any number of other instances. In those cases, it is prudent to seek out an attorney who work on brain injury and negligence cases to preserve your legal rights.
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