Two doctors looking at digital images of a brain.

What is a Catastrophic Injury?

Understanding the Consequences of a Catastrophic Injury

A catastrophic injury is one so extreme that it results in devastating and life-altering consequences. From traumatic brain injuries to spinal cord injuries, read on to learn what classifies an injury as catastrophic and the long-term effects they pose on victims.

Which Injuries Are Classified as Catastrophic?

Catastrophic injuries can be physical, disabling, and disfiguring. Catastrophic injuries may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are caused by a violent blow or jolt to the head or body.
  • Spinal cord injuries are caused by damage to any part of the spinal cord or spinal cord nerves.
  • Limb amputation is the surgical removal of all or part of an extremity (arm, leg, foot, hand, toe, or finger).
  • Burn injuries/severe disfigurements can be caused by overexposure to heat and contact with chemicals or electrical currents.
  • Birth injuries occur through physical harm to a baby or mother before, during, or after the birthing process.
  • Loss of sight can be caused by punctures, bruises, scratches, foreign objects, or chemical exposure to the eye.
  • Loss of hearing may be due to a ruptured eardrum caused by loud blasts of noise or sudden pressure changes.
  • Internal organ injuries can be caused by a body part colliding with an object at high speed, such as a motor vehicle accident.

The Long-Term Effects of a Catastrophic Injury

Sustaining any type of catastrophic injury can impose life-altering consequences such as:

Life-Long Medical Care

Catastrophic injuries often subject victims to a lifetime of medical care, treatments, and therapies — and the costs can be monumental. Catastrophic injury patients may need the following throughout their lifetime:

  • In-home care
  • Hospital visits/stays
  • Doctors visits
  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Cognitive therapy
  • Speech/language therapy
  • Behavioral management
  • Surgeries
  • Medications

Physical and Emotional Pain

One of the most challenging aftereffects of a catastrophic injury is dealing with physical and emotional pain — even long after the injury occurred. While physical injuries may subside, many victims continue to suffer emotionally. Some of the most common emotional issues catastrophic injury victims face are:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Flashbacks of the incident
  • Loss of interest in the activities that were once enjoyed

Relationship Issues

Since catastrophic injuries pose emotional instabilities, like mood swings and behavioral changes, the impact on loved ones can also be devastating — especially when partners suddenly become caregivers. Not only can it make the injured person feel like a burden to their partner, but it can be difficult for their loved one to witness their physical and emotional pain. Add in the financial burdens from being unable to work and mounting medical bills; it can put even more stress on the relationship.

When You Need Help Filing a Catastrophic Injury Claim, We Are Here For You.

Sustaining a debilitating and life-altering injury is a devastating event that can put tremendous strains on victims and their families. When the careless actions of another party cause you harm, you have the right to hold them accountable. Our catastrophic injury lawyers have handled catastrophic injury cases ranging from traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries to birth injuries, disfigurement, and more.

We are prepared to fight for the compensation you deserve — but time is of the essence. In Colorado, claimants have two years from the date of their accident to file a personal injury suit — three years in most car accident claims. Speak to an experienced attorney at our firm today to learn your rights.

Contact Denver Trial Lawyers® today at (303) 647-9990 for a free consultation. There are no fees unless we win.