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Motorcyclist sustained serious multiple injuries and brain injury

15 May 2019

On 2 April 2017 Mr S was riding his motorcycle when he was hit by a car and sustained serious multiple injuries. He was taken by ambulance to hospital, but due to the severity of the dislocation fracture he had sustained to his right ankle, he was urgently transferred to St George’s Hospital to save his right foot.

On admission to St George’s Mr S was diagnosed as having complex fractures to his right ankle and a spinal injury. Mr S underwent surgery to reattach the right foot and restore circulation and was initially treated conservatively for his spinal injuries but due to the severity of the injury he later had to undergo two lots surgery to his spine. Although it was noted that Mr S had hit his head, as there was damage to his helmet, no tests were carried out to seek out a possible head injury.

Whilst Mr S was in hospital the focus was on saving his foot and treating his spinal injury. In many cases people will have sustained multiple and serious injuries and arrive at emergency departments and are treated for the immediate obvious physical injuries whilst the brain injury remains unidentified as was the case for Mr S.

Following an immediate needs assessment commissioned by his solicitor it was identified the Mr S was showing the signs of a brain injury. Mr S showed signs of depression, anxiety and a change in personality. He had poor memory, poor attention span, sleep disturbance, irritable-emotional disturbance, confusion, inability to make decisions and word finding difficulties. These are all signs that are associated to a brain injury but which were not identified immediately by the hospital or his GP. These symptoms are sometimes not present or noticed at the time of injury as in the case of Mr S. There may be a delay by days or weeks before they appear. The symptoms can be subtle and are often missed by the injured person, family and doctors.

Mr S appeared to be normal as he was speaking and moving normally and to the medical professional it was difficult to identify a brain injury and was easily missed especially as they didn’t know what he was like before the accident. However, the family were able to identify immediately that he was not himself. Family and friends noticed changes in behaviour before Mr S realises there was a problem.

He was unable to carry out simple day to day tasks or his job. He was assessed by a psychologist and neurologist who later confirmed he was suffering from a brain injury. Barlow Robbins Solicitors helped organise and obtain funding for the neurological and neuropsychological assessments followed by the recommended treatment. Our aim was to get Mr S an early diagnosis and obtain the funding for rehabilitation he needed in order to achieve the best possible recovery from his injury.

Maria Mingoia, Associate at Barlow Robbins comments:

"Our highly experienced specialised team of solicitors were able to identify symptoms that were indicative of a brain injury and we were therefore able to steer the client and his family to seek relevant medical advice as was the case here."
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For further advice on the above topics, please call us on 01483 464222 or alternatively email enquiries@barlowrobbins.com