young man in wheelchairThere are several long-term symptoms you might suffer after sustaining a brain injury in a vehicle accident. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one that interferes with the normal functioning of your brain. A closed TBI often results from a vehicle accident in which the victim’s head comes into contact with a dashboard, steering wheel, or windshield. A more dangerous penetrating TBI can occur when the brain is pierced by broken glass or bone shards from a skull fracture. TBIs are generally categorized as mild, moderate, or severe.

Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms

TBIs can affect all of the brain’s functioning. Symptoms of each include:

  • Cognitive. Cognitive TBI symptoms include depression, disorientation, nervousness, loss of memory, anxiety, moodiness, loss of consciousness, amnesia, and inability to think clearly.
  • Sensory. Sensory TBI symptoms include vision problems, changes in taste or smell, ringing in the ears, and sensitivity to light or sound.
  • Physical. Physical TBI symptoms include headache, nausea, dizziness, speech problems, insomnia, difficulty waking up, dilated pupils, balance issues, loss of coordination, and fluid dripping from the nose or ears.

Long-Term TBI Symptoms

While a mild TBI or concussion can often be treated with rest and medication, moderate and severe TBIs can result in long-term, life-altering symptoms that persist even after the victim has attained maximum medical improvement (MMI). Long-term impacts include:

Inability to Perform Basic Daily Tasks

A TBI victim could have trouble eating, drinking, using silverware, tying shoelaces, bathing, or performing other daily tasks without assistance.


Driving, walking, running, standing, or turning over in bed could be difficult or impossible for a TBI victim.

Inability to Work

A victim might not be able to return to previous employment or to work at all while astronomical medical bills are piling up.


A TBI sufferer could have ongoing trouble interpreting facial expressions and other non-verbal cues, expressing ideas, or remembering vocabulary to communicate clearly. Marriage, family, and relationship problems might result from such issues.


At least half of TBI victims experience a decline in the quality of their lives within five years of being injured. Prone to suffer problems with other systems and organs after a brain injury, they can develop epilepsy and are 50 times more likely to experience seizures than non-victims are.

They’re also more apt to suffer from alcoholism, drug overdoses, and pneumonia. More than half of them make recurring trips to the hospital, suffer from disabilities, lose their jobs, and get divorced. One-third of TBI victims need help with daily activities and experience dissatisfaction with their existence. More than 10% reside in nursing homes or other assisted-living facilities.

Shortened Life Expectancy

On average, the life expectancy of a TBI victim is nine years less than that of a non-victim. Those most likely to die young are men, unmarried people, the unemployed, and those with minimal education.

Do Not Accept a Quick Settlement After a TBI Caused by an Accident

If you sustain a TBI as a result of another driver’s negligence in a Virginia vehicle accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company is responsible for your resulting damages, which could include:

  • All current and future medical care
  • Assistive devices for your home or vehicle
  • Present and future lost income
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Psychological trauma
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

If you’ve lost a loved one to a TBI caused by someone else, you’re entitled to file a wrongful death claim to recover burial expenses, as well as the damages listed above, for the time that your loved one remained alive.

Don’t Be Taken in by an Insurance Adjuster

All these expenses add up to a very costly damage claim for the at-fault driver’s insurance company, which is in business to earn money for shareholders, not to lose money by paying expensive damage claims. For this reason, an insurance adjuster is likely to contact you shortly after your accident, feigning concern for your health.

The adjuster’s goal, however, is to convince you to accept a quick settlement to help you with your current medical bills. This offer will be a low one that you should not accept. You don’t even know what your total medical expenses will be until you’ve completed current treatment and determined what your long-term TBI symptoms and care needs will be.

Have You Suffered a TBI in Virginia Accident?

An experienced car accident attorney can handle all communications with the insurer, evaluate your case to demand reasonable compensation, and assist you in finding sources to pay medical bills while you await a fair settlement. Contact us online or call us at 540-341-0007 to schedule your free consultation. You pay no attorney fees until we win your case.


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Working with Andrew and his team has been--without exception--one of the most pleasant, productive, and professional experiences of my adult life. I was seriously injured in an accident in July, 2018, in Virginia. I was driving a company vehicle that was registered in Maryland, for a company that was based in Wisconsin. And I live in New Jersey, where my personal vehicles are insured. The several jurisdictions involved presented a very unique case that demanded an experienced and nuanced strategy. I found Andrew Thomas (of Dulaney, Lauer, & Thomas) through some online research. And it is noteworthy that Andrew has worked the other side of the aisle--he used to work with insurance companies. Andrew took on my case with the assurance that he would work it with no less energy than he does each of his cases. At each turn, and with each question I had, Andrew and Paralegal Misty kept me informed, returned my calls, provided detailed explanations, and kept me feeling like I was in the loop and there was an eventual end to our journey. Nearly five years after the accident, we settled out of court for a significant sum in recognition of my personal injuries. The settlement was much more than I had expected. And without Andrew & Misty, I am sure the award would have been much less. If you are looking for professionalism, knowledge, dedication, answerability, responsiveness, integrity, and human-level communication from a personal injury attorney--look no further. You have found him. Thank you, Andrew and Misty. Gary Daley
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