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What Is an Anoxic Brain Injury?
Posted in Brain Injury on January 21, 2021
An anoxic brain injury is a serious condition caused by oxygen deprivation to the brain. Our brain controls our body’s most important functions and relies on oxygen to survive. After approximately four minutes of oxygen deprivation, our brain cells start to die, and we can experience severe, permanent brain damage. If you or someone you love suffers an anoxic brain injury due to the negligence of another person, you may be eligible to collect financial compensation for any injury-related damages. Contact our Seattle brain injury lawyers today for a free case evaluation.
What Can Cause an Anoxic Brain Injury?
There are multiple types of anoxic brain injuries, including the following.
- Toxic anoxia, which occurs when chemicals or poisons prevent the brain from absorbing oxygen
- Anoxic anoxia, which occurs when there is a lack of oxygen in the air
- Anemic anoxia, which occurs when the blood cannot properly carry oxygen to the brain
- Hypoxic ischemic injury or stagnant anoxia, which occurs due to strokes or when oxygen-carrying blood cells cannot reach the brain
Anoxic brain injuries can occur for several reasons, including medical emergencies and serious accidents. Strokes, drowning incidents, heart attacks, low blood pressure, carbon monoxide poisoning, drug overdoses, and choking often contribute to these injuries.
In some cases, another person’s negligence causes a person to suffer from an anoxic brain injury; a negligent water park that fails to adhere to safety regulations, for example, creates an environment where a person can suffer a near-drowning accident and develop brain damage. Acts of medical malpractice may also cause anoxic brain injuries, including the following.
- Surgical errors
- Anesthesia errors
- Errors that trigger cardiac or respiratory arrest
- Failure to monitor oxygen levels during labor and delivery
- Failure to monitor vital signs during surgery
- Hospital or emergency room errors
Can You Recover from an Anoxic Brain Injury?
Anoxic brain injuries can impair your ability to function, leading to short and long-term symptoms depending on how long and how severe the period of oxygen deprivation was. These symptoms may include, but are not limited to, the following.
- Slurred speech and difficulty communicating
- Poor concentration
- Difficulty with balance, movement, and coordination
- Headaches, seizures, and vision problems
- Mood swings, personality changes, and depression
- Confusion, disorientation, and forgetfulness
- Changes in sexual function
- Motor impairment
You can recover from an anoxic brain injury, but your prognosis will depend on the severity of your injuries and which part of the brain experienced the injury. Patients with mild anoxic brain injuries can make a full or partial recovery with physical rehabilitation. Full recovery from a severe anoxic brain injury is rare.
Can You Sue for an Anoxic Brain Injury?
If someone else’s negligence caused your anoxic brain injury, you may be eligible to pursue a lawsuit against him or her in Washington civil court. For example, you can file a claim against a negligent property owner who failed to keep his or her property in safe condition, leading to an accident that caused your brain damage. You can also hold medical professionals who provide treatment to you accountable if they commit acts of malpractice that cause the anoxic brain injury.
To hold a party liable for your injuries, however, you will need to gather enough evidence to establish his or her negligence. You will need to prove that he or she owed you a duty of care, breached that duty of care, and that the breach caused your injuries and damages.
A Seattle personal injury lawyer can represent your case. Your attorney will have the skills and resources necessary to launch a full investigation into your accident and assess the extent of your injuries and damages. Contact your attorney as soon as possible following your accident to initiate your claim.