Getting the Right Diagnosis before an Auto Accident Settlement

By Flux
Edited by Admin
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Tom Wolfe’s classic 80s tome The Bonfire of the Vanities centres its plot around a white, ultra-rich bonds salesman running his car into a poor black teenager on the streets of the Bronx, causing a brain injury that put the teenager in a coma. The story follows the eventual auto accident settlement, as a member of New York’s most privileged faces the law for his abuse of one of the Big Apple’s most downtrodden. One of the key points in this fictional auto accident settlement, and one that helps us to understand brain injury, might seem unusual. After the boy gets hit, he seems fine but for a sprained wrist. He’s bandaged up at the hospital and returns home. Then, the next day, he suffers fainting spells. Back at the hospital, his condition worsens still, leading the doctors to conclude that he indeed suffered a severe brain injury. But what happened?


In the medical community, brain injury is known as the invisible injury. Closed head injuries leave little or no external damage but can have fatal outcomes. Worst of all, like in Vanities, traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) might not show symptoms until hours or days later. This makes diagnosis difficult. Fortunately, doctors have come a long way in recognizing these injuries early, helping to keep you safer.


TBI Diagnosis


Let’s say you’ve been in an accident, gotten cleared as TBI-free by a doctor, and now you’re at your free consultation at a Toronto personal injury law firm. One of the first facts any Toronto personal injury lawyer would likely want to know is which diagnostic tests the hospital ran. There are many ways to diagnose brain injury, and some are more effective than others.

  • Screening Tests
    • The most basic TBI diagnoses are simple oral or paper tests administered by ER doctors. Though cheaper than using medical equipment, these tests will not register delayed symptoms.
  • CT Scans
    • Commonly referred to as “cat scans”, CT scans take x-ray images of your brain from multiple angles, ultimately forming a complete, three-dimensional image. CT scans are quick and relatively inexpensive.
  • MRI
    • Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, uses magnets and radio waves to produce more accurate images than CT scans. However, MRI is a relatively drawn out process, so it is rarely used for the initial diagnosis TBIs.

The testing you received after your injury can potentially play an important role in your auto accident settlement.


TBI Treatment


An auto accident settlement is about getting better. But, in the case of TBIs, treatment and recovery can be an expensive process. Over the course of your recovery, you might consult with neurologists, psychiatrists, rehabilitation therapists, case managers, and social workers. If the cost of all this is prohibitive for you, consult with Toronto personal injury lawyers first. They can get you the compensation you need through an auto accident settlement. Don’t end up in a Tom Wolfe novel; call Sokoloff for all the legal assistance that you need during this difficult period.