A catastrophic injury is one that is so severe that it usually results in long-term medical conditions, permanent disability, and/or a shortened life expectancy. These types of injuries often result in multiple surgeries, long-term hospital stays, rehabilitation, and other long-term treatment or problems.
What makes an injury catastrophic?
Catastrophic injuries are devastating in many ways, and to much more than just the victim. The emotional and financial impact of a catastrophic injury can be overwhelming, during what is already a stressful time. The causes can be car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slips and falls and other personal injuries.
Examples of Catastrophic Injuries
Catastrophic injuries can be the result of trauma or a serious disease or illness. The body’s impact against hard surfaces or exposure to fire can cause catastrophic injuries. Some common examples of traumatic catastrophic injuries are burn injuries, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries resulting in paralysis, organ damage, broken bones, and amputations. Diseases such as cancer or debilitating arthritis can be catastrophic as well.
Catastrophic Burn Injuries
Burn injuries can occur in auto, truck and motorcycle accidents. The seriousness of the injury depends on the degree of the burn. Burns range from first degree, where only the outermost layer of skin is damaged, to third degree, which involves damage through the full depth of the skin and the underlying tissue. In motor vehicle accidents of all kinds, the burns are caused by oil and gas, which are extremely flammable and prone to explosion. Burns can also be caused by chemicals, electricity and scalding hot liquids. Burns can also lead to infection, scarring and disfigurement.
Catastrophic internal injuries
These types of injuries are often caused by violent shaking of the occupants in a vehicle at the point of impact. Many times internal injuries from motor vehicle accidents go undetected for several days following the accident. These injuries often require examination by a doctor to be discovered and diagnosed. Internal injuries can be very dangerous because they can quickly develop into more serious conditions. In addition to the above internal injuries from a motor vehicle accident, victims may also suffer bruising to various internal organs.
If you or a loved one has suffered a catastrophic injury, the first step is to try to reach the highest level of physical recovery possible. If full recovery is not possible, as is often the case with catastrophic injuries, rehabilitation services or vocational programs are available to help you or your loved one achieve the highest quality of life possible. As experienced catastrophic injury attorneys, the Cottrell Law Office will work to make sure you receive the compensation to which you are entitled.
If you have questions regarding catastrophic, or any other personal injury matters, call the Cottrell Law Office at (888) 433-4861.
He is licensed to practice law in the United States District Court for the District of Kansas, eastern Arkansas, western Arkansas, and western Missouri. He was Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Crawford County, Kansas from 1987-1989.
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