As automobile and commercial trucking accident lawyers, we often meet individuals who have been hurt, either superficially or seriously in a Maryland traffic collision. As experienced trial lawyers skilled in the area of personal injury law, we fully understand the pain and discomfort that a car accident injury can cause a person. With more than six million traffic collisions occurring every year in this country, should anyone be surprised at the number of injuries and wrongful deaths that take place on an annual basis.
Here in Maryland, more than three dozen people die every month as a result of a roadway collision or pedestrian-car crash. Easily a dozen or more individuals die every month in passenger car accidents in and around cities like Hagerstown, Frederick, Rockville and Bowie. As Baltimore personal injury lawyers, the legal team at Lebowitz & Mzhen, LLC, knows how easily a car, truck or motorcycle crash can happen; and how, easier still, drivers and passengers can find themselves lying in a hospital bed with extreme injuries and a dim outlook on the future.
As experienced trial attorneys, we know that finding a qualified legal professional is critical for anyone who has been seriously injured in a roadway collision. The problem is that choosing an attorney is much more difficult when one is incapacitated from a car crash caused by a negligent motorist. As bad as many auto accident-related injuries are, it could be argued that fighting with an insurance company over compensation for medical treatment can be even more traumatic than the traffic wreck that led to those injuries.
This is why locating a good attorney to handle one’s personal injury case is rather important. Sadly, the timing is hardly favorable in such situations. For example, an experienced injury lawyer would be able to tell his client that insurance claims adjusters might seem over-zealous when investigating details related to the car accident that caused his client’s injuries. While these individuals may seem harsh and impersonal at times, it is often because some claimants are not always completely honest when it comes to the facts of an accident, or their specific injuries.
If an injured person is concerned about recovering costs for her injuries, and the insurance company seems to be giving that individual the runaround, it may be time to consider retaining a personal injury lawyer. The same can be said regarding compensation for damage to one’s vehicle. If the insurer is having trouble determining liability or if the compensation offered is less than you believe is fair, a qualified auto accident lawyer should be able to assist you.
It’s no secret that trying to single-handedly take on an insurance company and its lawyers can be a daunting proposition. Without some previous experience with a similar situation, the average person is learning almost everything from scratch. Considering all the legal aspects would be hard enough, but for a person already suffering from bodily injuries received in a crash, the task can be nothing short of monumental.
For anyone who has ever been involved in a traffic collision, the odds are high that they sustained some kind of injury. Insurance companies will look into the reasons for the injuries to determine if any were pre-existing conditions or not directly attributable to the car or motorcycle accident. Some of the more serious injuries that can affect a victim of a road accident may include the following:
Back Injury -- Depending on the type and severity of the particular car crash, an accident victim may experience some kind of back-related injury. These kinds of injuries, which are rather dependent on various factors, can often result in serious conditions and life-altering complications down the road. A sub-set of this category of bodily injury is spinal cord damage. Of all the kinds of injuries that victims can receive in a traffic wreck, a spine-related injury is one of the most serious.
Spinal cord injuries are differentiated from other problems of the spine -- that is, those caused by disease as opposed to trauma to the spine and vertebra. Depending on the location of the injury to the spinal cord, as well as the related nerve damage, symptoms can vary between mild to severe pain all the way to complete paralysis. Treatment of spinal cord can often require substantial physical therapy and rehabilitation, which can be especially costly depending on the type and duration of the care.
Facial Injuries -- Car accidents can result in any number of injuries to a victim’s body, however the face is one of the most common sites of serious injury. Contact with the vehicle’s steering wheel, the dashboard or windshield side pillars, even an airbag or car seat can result in severe cuts, abrasions, burns and other trauma. Ranging in severity from minor scrapes and bruises to serious fractures, deep lacerations and dental injuries, trauma to the face will require not only emergency medical care, but also may result in disfigurement requiring plastic surgery and other reconstructive medical efforts.Internal Bleeding -- Also known as internal hemorrhage, internal bleeding is indicated by blood loss from the vascular system that pools or collects in a body cavity. The condition can be caused by blunt-force trauma such as during high-speed deceleration that accompanies a bad auto accident. Internal bleeding is a serious condition and can even prove to be life-threatening depending on rate of blood loss and the location of the bleeding. Some of the more critical areas of the body that can experience bleeding following a car crash include the brain, lungs and stomach. The worst-case scenario for this kind of medical condition is cardiac arrest and eventual death.
Compound Fractures -- Although broken bones are nothing to sneeze at, a compound bone fracture causes a break in the skin and may be accompanied by severe bleeding. These kinds of bone fractures are especially dangerous since they may expose the bone itself to contamination and result in a risk of infection. Depending on the displacement of the fracture and angulation, manipulation of the bone may be required in order to return it to an orientation with which it may eventually mend. In addition to the bleeding and infection risks associated with compound fractures, these kinds of injuries often require surgery to repair.
Brain injuries -- Also referred to a as closed-head trauma or closed-head injury, brain injuries occur with the skull and dura mater still intact. Sadly, closed-head injuries are the main cause of death in children four years and younger. Even in non-fatal closed-head injury cases, infants and toddlers can end up with a physical disability or cognitive impairment as a result. In general, closed-head injuries, as well as other forms of mild traumatic brain injury account for nearly three-quarters of the almost 17 million brain injuries that happen across the nation every year.
Coma -- Originating from the Greek meaning “deep sleep,” a medical coma is defined as a state of unconsciousness that lasts for more than six hours, during which the subject A) cannot be awakened, B) fails to respond normally to painful stimuli, light, and/or sound, C) lacks a normal sleep-wake cycle, and D) does not initiate voluntary actions. Coma can be caused by an injury to either the cerebral cortex (the gray matter lying on the outer layer of the brain) or the reticular activating system (RAS or ARAS) in the brainstem.
Coma is known to result from any of a variety of conditions, including intoxication (as from an overdose or misuse of prescription drugs or controlled substances), metabolic abnormalities, central nervous system diseases, and others. While drug-related coma is the most frequent (upward of 40 percent of coma cases), lack of oxygen to the brain is the second most common cause (approximately 25 percent), usually brought on by cardiac arrest; the latter being one of the occasional consequences of a serious car accident.
Amputations -- Aside from the medically-necessitated procedure, amputation can occur during a serious traffic accident, via the severing of any of the victim’s appendages, or the victim’s head (decapitation). The loss of an arm or leg during a highway collision can result in massive blood loss, which itself can cause death in a short period of time unless attended to quickly.
Degloving injuries -- A type of avulsion, the term degloving refers to a portion of a victim’s skin that is completely torn away from the underlying tissue. Degloving injuries typically affect an individual’s extremities or limbs. Motorcycle riders, especially those who operate without protective clothing, can run the risk of certain kinds of degloving events. It should be noted that any such injury that results in degloving of the head or torso will likely to be lethal.
Ruptured Organs -- The rupture of any organ is always cause for alarm and should be treated as soon as possible at the nearest medical facility. In high-speed automobile, commercial trucking and motorcycle accidents, it is not uncommon for a victim to suffer from this kind of internal injury. One of the more common organs that can be damaged during severe traffic accidents is the spleen. Located in the upper-left quadrant of the abdomen, the spleen performs a blood-filtering function by removing old or damaged blood cells and platelets.
Psychological Injuries -- Finally, it must be said that a percentage of car, truck and motorcycle accidents -- mainly those involving very serious injury or loss of life -- can cause some severe psychological issues for many victims and their families. Motorists and passengers who survive a traumatic event such as a traffic accident involving fire, great bodily harm or death, can suffer from short- or long-term psychological issues. These may include continuing or persistent anxiety, emotional distress, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and depression. While not of a physical nature, these psychological injuries can nonetheless pose a significant and very detrimental effect on a victim and his or her family.
Although a person can live following the removal of a damaged spleen, this organ does provide an important protective immunological function for the body. In addition to helping the body’s immune system by eliminating bacteria and other foreign substances, the spleen also produces antibodies and acts a storage area for about one-third of the body’s blood platelets. When damaged in a car crash, a ruptured spleen can permit large quantities of blood to leak into the victim’s abdominal cavity, which can send the person into shock and ultimately result in death if not treated quickly.
If you or a loved one has received serious or life-threatening injuries as a result of an automobile or commercial trucking collision, the law offices of Lebowitz & Mzhen are ready to assist in recovering medical and rehab costs necessitated by an accident caused by the negligence of another driver. With years of experience in handling traffic-related personal injury cases here in Maryland, our legal team is well-versed in case law, and possesses a great deal of courtroom expertise. As auto injury attorneys, we are ready to discuss the details of your auto or trucking-related accident. Please give us a call toll-free at (800) 654-1949. Or you may contact either Jack Lebowitz or Vadim Mzhen by email to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.