Some injuries are minor, which means the body can heal them completely. A broken bone knits given the right treatment and enough time immobilized. People don’t have any lasting symptoms or functional limitations after they recover from their injury. Other injuries are more severe and may cause lasting medical issues. Catastrophic injuries tend to have life-altering consequences for the people who suffer them because they do not fully heal. Amputations, spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries can all be catastrophic.
They can completely change the life of the person injured and their close loved ones. The impact that injuries have on people is different in every case, but there are certain consequences that occur more frequently than others. The three consequences below are among the most common for those with catastrophic injuries.
Major medical expenses
Catastrophic injuries do not simply leave someone with debilitating symptoms. They require frequent medical intervention. Symptom management and treatment to prevent conditions from progressing may be lifelong needs for those with catastrophic injuries. The lifetime medical expenses for catastrophic injuries like spinal cord injuries can often reach millions of dollars. From surgery after an initial injury to physical therapy and pain management, there could be medical expenses that continue to accrue every year for the rest of someone’s life.
Decreased earning potential
In many cases, catastrophic injuries alter what work someone can do. In severe cases, those with catastrophic injuries may not be able to work at all for the rest of their lives. Other times, they can continue working but cannot earn as much as they did before. Physical limitations, changes in personality and even disfiguring scars can all influence what someone earns after a major injury.
Someone with a brain injury might require support to manage their daily life given their symptoms. Those with spinal cord injuries may need to make drastic changes to their housing and transportation. The cost of accommodations can be significant, and often people have to find ways to cover those costs on their own.
Catastrophic injuries often result in massive expenses that even the most generous insurance policy cannot fully cover. Recognizing the long-term challenges generated by an injury may help people to more accurately quantify the compensation they require and to seek it via personal injury litigation if their harm was caused by another’s actions or inactions.