Brain hypoxia is a medical term. It describes what occurs when oxygen stops flowing to the brain. In order to function right, brain cells need a constant flow of oxygen. So, any disruption in oxygen flow can be serious. Anoxia, or the complete loss of oxygen flow to the brain, may even lead to death.
Tragically, many people in Chicago and throughout Illinois suffer anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries due to others’ negligence. For instance, a car accident victim may suffer a head injury that disrupts blood flow to the brain, or a doctor may make a medical error that cuts off oxygen supply.
People with anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries often suffer permanent brain damage. In severe cases, they may be unable to move or speak the same – if at all – or they may be left in a coma. Needless to say, their families feel the burden. They often become their loved one’s full-time care provider.
At Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., we have dedicated the past 40 years to helping families to deal with serious injuries brought on by others’ negligence, including families whose loved one suffers from brain injury. Over that time span, we have secured some of the largest settlements and verdicts of their kind in Illinois. For a free evaluation of your case, contact a member of our dedicated brain injury legal team today.
What Are Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries?
Many hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries occur when someone drowns, suffocates, suffers major blood loss or goes into cardiac arrest. Many brain injury victims don’t initially understand the nature of what has happened. However, as victims and families move forward, they should understand the injury and its ramifications.
Hypoxic and anoxic brain injury is not the same as traumatic brain injury. They are different types of brain injuries. TBI typically involves damage to the brain’s tissue and structure. Hypoxic and anoxic brain injury is characterized by a disruption in the supply of oxygen to the brain.
Unfortunately, doctors may find it difficult to diagnose hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries. Those injuries are not as obvious as TBI. Also, TBI usually results from the head hitting another object. The cause of hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries is not always so clear and may not arise within the brain. For instance, anoxic or hypoxic brain injury may occur because a person suffers a heart attack or inhales smoke.
Hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries can have a lasting impact on victims and their families. For instance, many brain injury victims suffer from irreparable damage to the nerve cells in the brain, which can make it difficult to concentrate. It can also cause:
- Short-term memory loss
In many cases, people suffer severe forms of injury due to loss of oxygen to the brain. Those injuries include:
- Limb weakness
- Problems with balance
- Cortical blindness
- Memory loss
- Difficulty speaking
- Mood swings.
These symptoms can make even everyday activities difficult for victims and leave family members in the role of full-time caretaker. The injury, in this sense, can take a significant toll on all parties involved.
What Are Leading Causes of Anoxic and Hypoxic Brain Injuries?
Like any other type of injury, hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries have a number of different causes. Negligence, of course, serves as a leading cause. For instance, medical malpractice may occur during a child’s birth which causes the child’s brain to be deprived of oxygen. Hypoxia and anoxia during childbirth has been linked to cerebral palsy, which is a permanent disorder.
However, it is not only the negligence of medical professionals that can cause hypoxic and anoxic brain injuries. For instance, a person may do something careless behind the wheel and collide head on with another car. The injuries which the person suffers in that car crash could include hypoxic or anoxic brain injury.
Some of the other leading causes of anoxic and hypoxic brain injuries are:
- Low blood pressure caused by extreme blood loss
- Severe asthma attacks or allergic reactions
- Smoke inhalation
- Complications during the administration of general anesthesia.
Unfortunately, even relatively minor accidents can result in one of these complications. If left unaddressed, it could lead to permanent brain damage.
How Can a Lawyer Help with Your Anoxic or Hypoxic Brain Injury?
It can be difficult to determine whether another person or entity is responsible for an anoxic or hypoxic brain injury. These injuries are not always the obvious result of someone else’s negligent conduct. Also, insurance companies often try to downplay the connection.
For example, a driver causes an auto accident. The person whom the driver hits suffers from cardiac arrest and, in turn, suffers hypoxic brain injury. The at-fault driver’s insurance company may try to avoid liability by claiming that the heart attack was unrelated to the accident and, instead, it was the product of the injury victim’s poor health.
An experienced hypoxic brain injury attorney will have the knowledge and resources to thoroughly investigate this type of accident, review medical records, and consult with experts. The attorney will know what it takes to establish the necessary link between the crash and the resulting brain injury.
The attorneys of Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C. have a long history of success in catastrophic injury cases. We understand how brain injuries impact the lives of victims and their family members. We are motivated to pursue the maximum amount for them and to help them to move on with their lives.
Our Chicago Anoxic/Hypoxic Brain Injury Attorneys Want to Help You
If you or your loved one suffered anoxic or hypoxic brain injury due to the suspected negligence of another, you need to take immediate steps to protect your legal rights. Contact Salvi, Schostok & Pritchard P.C., to speak with a dedicated personal injury attorney in Chicago or Waukegan. The attorney will evaluate your case and explain your legal options for free.