Hövding Bicycle Helmet: An Airbag for Your Head

Helmets may not be the most stylish look when riding a bicycle but they are necessary to help prevent bicycle accident injuries. In cities like Detroit where bicycle transportation, like MoGo, is popular, no one wants to walk into a trendy Detroit restaurant like Takoi, carrying around a bulky, heavy helmet that requires you to give up arm real estate. However, there is now a very cool alternative to the traditional bucket helmet - Hövding, that you can start conversations about over your chickpea tofu!

Hovding_08.jpg

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in a survey done in 2001-2003, only 48% of children between the ages of 5-14 wore helmets while cycling, and older children were less likely to wear helmets than younger children. Similar statistics are likely one of the reasons Sweden passed a law in 2005 that required children under the age of 15 to wear helmets while biking. However, head injuries sustained while cycling are not a problem just for children. In 2010, over 800 bicyclists were killed and approximately 515,000 were injured in a bicycle-related accident, with about 26,000 of them receiving traumatic brain injuries (TBI). Because of how dangerous and frequent bicycle car accidents are, this much safer helmet may help prevent car accident head injuries from occurring.

According to their website, Hövding, also known as the airbag for your head, was created in 2005, the same year the law for children under the age of 15 being required to wear helmets in Sweden passed. The new bicycle safety law for children made people wonder if adults should also have to wear helmets. And so Anna Haupt and Terese Alstin, two students of Industrial Design, decided that they wanted to make a helmet that made people want to wear it, whether they needed it or not. Soon after, in 2006, Hövding won the Venture Cup competition, in which young business people get to turn their ideas into an actual business plan. Hövding Sweden AB was founded later that same year, and after another seven years, the airbag helmet idea became an approved and certified product. To date, over 60,000 Hövdings have been sold!

How The Hövding Helmet Works

Hövding has a built in airbag system, sensors and algorithms, activation, charging, and a collar and cover. The airbag is designed like a hood and is made from an ultra-strong fiber that won’t rip. It protects your head while still allowing you to see, and covers more than a typical helmet would. The bicycle helmet also has soft shock absorption components and can absorb multiple blows in the event of a bicycle accident. After the airbag is deployed from a blow to the head, it will deflate. As for the sensors and algorithms, thousands of tests were performed in order to get accurate data on the movements of someone in a bicycle accident, by both crash-test dummies and test riders of Hövding, in order to develop an algorithm that can distinguish between regular bike riding and bike accident conditions. 

Hövding requires a charge in order to work. The charge lasts for 9 hours of active cycling and can be done through an USB charger included in the purchase of a Hövding. There are LEDs at the front that show the wearer how full the battery is. The helmet is also waterproof and has an enclosing collar that wearers can change to fit their outfit or mood. The weight is distributed carefully to make sure it doesn’t disrupt cycling, with weight slightly heavier on the front so that the helmet is resting on the wearer’s back while cycling. In order to activate the Hövding, bicyclists must place it around their necks and zip it up all the way, or it won’t work. Then attach the button on the zip tag onto the right side of the collar. To deactivate Hövding, unclip the button. The helmet should only be activated while cycling.

If you want to see Hövding in action during a bicycle car crash or in the event of a bicycle accident head injury, check out this video.


Helmets aren’t very popular to wear for a lot of cyclists and can be bulky and uncomfortable. Perhaps Hövding is the answer to this. Not only is Hövding more fashionable, compact, and comfortable, it is also safer than a conventional helmet and may prevent injuries typical helmets wouldn’t. If you or a loved one have been injured in a bicycle car accident, call The Michigan Law Firm, PC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation, with an experienced accident attorney.

March Is Brain Injury Awareness Month

FACT - At least 5.3 million Americans live with a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)-related disability.

FACT - Everyday, about 137 people die in the U.S. from a TBI-related injury.

FACT - In Michigan, 58,500 will sustain a TBI every year.

These numbers are staggering. And yet, much of the public is undereducated on the topic of brain injuries.

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Well, those who want to learn more about brain injuries are in luck since March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), which is an organization created specifically to speak about and spread awareness of brain injuries, annually leads the nation in commemorating Brain Injury Awareness Month by creating brain injury awareness campaigns. Thethe theme for 2018 - 2020 is "Change Your Mind."

#ChangeYourMind informs the public about what brain injuries are, the prevalence of brain injuries, and of the needs of people with brain injuries as well as their families’ needs. The BIAA also works with the brain injury community to “de-stigmatize the injury, empower those who have survived, and promote the many types of support that are available.” The BIAA’s campaign and general brain injury advocacy are necessary to the advancement of science and the human understanding of the most mysterious organ, the brain. The more awareness there is around a subject, the more the public’s thirst for knowledge increases, and subsequently more research is performed to find answers and solutions to the problem millions are facing.

Source: BIAA

Source: BIAA

In the past, the lack of general knowledge on the seriousness of brain injuries and brain injury treatments caused confusion to those who suffered from TBIs. Brain injuries affect day to day living, various social interactions, and short term and long term health. One man who was involved in a head-on car collision shared his TBI story on the BIAA’s website. He suffered a Diffuse Axonal TBI from his car accident and was in a 32 day coma. A Diffuse Axonal TBI occurs when the brain’s long connecting nerve fibers tear when the brain rotates inside the skull. In his own words, “This all took place at a time when very few would survive something like this. Of the 3 people involved, I am the only one who survived. I feel that I was spared for a reason at a time when computers were just a great fantasy, and I was expected to go on in life as if nothing was wrong. By about the 4th termination from employment I began to realize that I wasn’t as ‘fine’ as I was told, BUT, I signed off on the claim in the judge’s chambers in 1977 so there was no way to prove anything until 35 years later I showed a job history which reads like a phone book.”

While not everyone is affected by brain injuries, anyone is susceptible to enduring one, since humans are a very active bunch. From taking a blow to the head in football, to slipping and knocking the noggin on an icy sidewalk, to loss of blood flow to the brain following a brain hemorrhage, there are many ways to fall prey to TBIs. And roughly 14.3% of TBIs are actually sustained in motor vehicle accidents. The Michigan Law Firm, PC helps victims of motor vehicle accidents who have suffered from a TBI. This is why our TBI lawyers are always studying up on the latest brain injury recovery breakthroughs and are keeping informed on the topic of neurocognitive deficits. Our law firm seeks to stay as knowledgeable on brain trauma as possible, so we can better advocate for our car accident clients, which is why we are proud members of the Brain Injury Association of Michigan (BIAMI), a BIAA affiliate.

Michigan Brain Injury Lawyer

As active members of BIAMI, The Michigan Law Firm, PC, regularly takes part in BIAMI events. Most notably, we attended the 2017 BIAMI Legal Conference in order to keep updated on and participate in discussions on the legal implications of brain injuries and other closed head injuries as a result of a car crash. In an effort to better support those who have sustained brain injuries, support the research into brain injury therapies, and to learn about new brain injury therapy protocols and diagnostic tests for TBI patients, the firm continues to be an active member of BIAMI. Our brain injury accident attorneys want to be involved in the conversation regarding the rights of treating providers including, but not limited to, neurologists, neuropsychiatrists, therapists, and other brain injury rehabilitation professionals. Most importantly, The Michigan Law Firm, PC wants to help BIAMI and BIAA increase awareness of brain injuries and help advance the world’s understanding of and immediate treatment of brain injuries.

Too keep up-to-date with Change Your Mind, follow #ChangeYourMind on Twitter, or visit the BIAA or BIAMI websites.


 If you or someone you know has suffered a brain injury or other serious injury as a result of an auto accident, call The Michigan Law Firm, PC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation.

Lawsuit Against Snapchat For Rewarding Speeding Drivers Dismissed

Last May, The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC blog reported on a car accident caused by a driver using Snapchat, while behind the wheel. Following this motor vehicle crash, the Spalding County State Court in Griffin, Georgia was tasked with ruling over a case that may have helped set a precedent for companies that create platforms, apps, and devices, who could be found responsible if their invention potentially causes a driver to become distracted while driving.  

Snapchat Car Crash Lawsuit

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The defendant in the case, Christal McGee, was 18 years old at the time of the September, 2016 Snapchat car accident. After being involved in the car crash, McGee posted a selfie on Snapchat that depicted her strapped to a gurney with a head wound, captioned, "Lucky to be alive." The photo went viral and sparked an investigation into her auto accident. Investigators found that McGee had been using a Snapchat filter that apparently records how fast the user is going at the time the picture is taken, and rewards the user with a 'trophy' if they are going more than 100 mph. It was discovered that McGee was going about 107 MPH with three passengers in the car, when Wentworth Maynard drifted into her lane and was rear-ended by McGee's speeding vehicle. 

The case was looking to determine whether or not Snapchat should be held responsible for this motor vehicle crash, and if they should pay reparations to Wentworth-a former Uber driver- and his wife Karen, who were both in the car rear-ended by McGee. Maynard had suffered a severe traumatic brain injury from the auto accident. After deliberating, Judge Josh Thacker ended up dismissing the charges against Snapchat, saying the company was immune to the charges under the following clause from the 1996 Communications Decency Act:

"No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider." 

McGee, however, has been charged with reckless driving, speeding, driving too fast for road conditions, and a felony charge of serious injury by vehicle. One of McGee's passengers was Heather McCarty, who was 27 and pregnant at the time of the distracted driving car crash, and had simply accepted a ride home from her co-worker, McGee.

The New York Daily News reports that while in the vehicle, McCarty said, "What are you doing? Slow down!" to McGee as she supposedly attempted to reach 100 mph. "I just remember screaming 'There's a car!' and I know we hit the back of his vehicle and I don't remember anything after that." 

Michigan Distracted Driving Laws 

The Michigan House of Representatives is in talks of creating a bill that will ban drivers from using their cell phone while behind the wheel, with the exception of Bluetooth and other hands-free technology. Drivers, MLive reports, would also be allowed to use their handheld device if they are pulled to the side of the road or in another area where they can remain stationary. Another exception is if the phone is securely mounted to the windshield or dashboard within easy reach. The bill will include banning the use of electronics such as handheld games, laptops, and GPS devices. Michigan drivers would even be prohibited from using the devices at stop signs and traffic lights.  

Source: GIPHY, American Broadcasting Company's  The View

Source: GIPHY, American Broadcasting Company's The View

The bill defines phone use as:

"Conducting a search; viewing, taking, or transmitting an image or video; playing games; performing a command or request to access an internet page; and composing, sending, reading, viewing, accessing, browsing, transmitting, saving, or retrieving an e-mail message, text message, instant message or other electronic data." - H.R. 4466

Any motorists that are found guilty would have to pay a $250 fine for the first offense and $500 for the second. First responders such as EMTs, firefighters, and law enforcement officers however, would be free to use a two-way radio or citizens band (CB) radio service. The bill would also exempt citizens who are reporting an accident, road hazard, crime, or other emergencies.

Jim Santilli, chief executive officer of the Transportation Improvement Association, a Troy-based nonprofit supporting the introduction of this bill, has said that after California banned the use of handheld electronic devices, traffic fatalities dropped by 22% and deaths specifically related to drivers using handheld devices fell 47%. So, it stands to reason that Michigan could benefit from implementing a similar law, helping minimize social media car accident injuries and distracted driving fatalities on the road. 

Snapchat Car Crash Lawyer

If you've ever tried to tell a teenager to put away their phone at the dinner table, you know how difficult the task is. Young adults and teens thrive on taking pictures, watching videos, and constantly checking social media. Hopefully however, with publicity from this Snapchat lawsuit and other social media car accident lawsuits and the possibility of new distracted driving laws being passed, distracted driving will be seen as a serious offense. Drivers may then be persuaded to turn of their mobile devices when behind the wheel, to prevent distracted driving accidents from happening. To nail this point on the head, a Snapchat spokesperson stated in relation to the McGee-Maynard case, "No Snap is more important than someone's safety." So, let's remember to practice safe driving habits and to leave the phone in the backseat, turned off, or in the hands of a passenger, next time we get ready to operate a moving vehicle. 


As accidents caused by distracted drivers are occurring increasingly more often, it is important that drivers become aware of preventative and safety measures to deter them from using their electronics while operating a vehicle. Distracted driving causes just as much harm and as many fatalities as drunk driving and so, it's prevention should be treated just as importantly. If you or someone you know has been in an accident involving a distracted driver, please call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.

CTE Found In Brains Of Former NFL Players

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A study published on July 25, 2015 in the Journal of the American Medical Association, JAMA has found that CTE, or chronic traumatic encephalopathy, in 99% of deceased NFL players' brains that were donated to scientific research. CTE is an effect of experiencing numerous traumatic brain injuries (TBI), and although the average person is more like to suffer a TBI from an auto accident, TBI's can occur while engaging in sports. In fact, all of the brains in the study were required to have football as their primary exposure to head trauma. The research subjects must have had to experience repetitive head trauma in their lifetimes, but may or may not have exhibited CTE symptoms during their lives. 

What Is Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy?

To explain it more clearly, CTE is pathologically characterized by a buildup of abnormal tau protein in the brain that can disable neuropathways and may lead to a variety of clinical symptoms, such as memory loss, confusion, impaired judgment, aggression, depression, anxiety, impulse control issues, and sometimes even suicidal behavior. CTE is found in individuals that have experienced repeated head trauma, and most cases were diagnosed in veterans and people who played contact sports like American football. The only formal diagnosis of this degenerative brain disease is through an autopsy, meaning that we can't knows if someone has CTE, for sure, until after they die. 

The study acknowledges potential bias because relatives of the players may have submitted their brains after noticing clinical symptoms while they were living. It also points out the lack of a comparison group to represent all individuals exposed to college-level or professional football. Without that, the study is unable to provide an overall estimate on the risk of playing football and its effects on the brain. 

CNN reports, "Out of 202 deceased former football players total--a combination of high school, college, and professional players--CTE was neuropathologically diagnosed in 177. The disease was identified in 110 out of 111 former NFL players. It was also found in three of the 14 high school players and 48 of the 53 college players."

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The NFL told CNN, "The medical and scientific communities will benefit from this publication, and the NFL will continue to work with a wide range of experts to improve the health of current and former NFL athletes...there are still many unanswered questions relating to the cause, incidence, and prevalence of long-term effects of head trauma such as CTE." 

The study looked at both the brain pathology, which is the behavior of the disease in the brain, and the clinical history of each participant. It identified four stages of pathological CTE severity among the brains, based on amounts of tau buildup and distribution. Stages one and two are classified as mild and stages three and four are severe. 

CNN summarized, "Individuals who were reported to have experienced more behavioral mood symptoms during their lifetime were more likely to have findings indicative of mild disease as opposed to severe. These symptoms occurred in 96% of mild cases and 89% of severe cases. People with a mild buildup and distribution of tau were also more likely to have died by suicide. Those with a severe buildup, on the other hand, were more likely to have experienced cognitive symptoms, such as memory loss." 

One of the biggest problems is a lack of encouragement for players to seek treatment. Stereotypes about mental health treatment and studies that emphasize problems stemming from brain trauma, without fully explaining the science behind it, may give athletes the idea that they can't do anything to help themselves. Although CTE can currently only be diagnosed after death, many symptoms of the disease that occur in someone's lifetime, like depression and anxiety, are treatable. It is important for someone experiencing symptoms from a traumatic brain injury to receive an evaluation from a neurologist and work with them to create a treatment plan. 

Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher, national director of the Sports Neurology Clinic at the Core Institute, who was not involved in the study, said, "My rule as a physician, as a neurologist, is to protect and promote the brain health of my patients over the course of a lifetime, no question about that. You have to look at the total person though. You have to understand why people play sports. It's an individual decision, everybody gets different things out of it. You also have to understand what the arc of their life is going to be, what their health is going to be at the end of their career." 

Kutcher mentions that most of the brains in the study came from players that were on the field decades ago, from the 1950s to the 1990s, with the rest having played more recently. There were not the same brain injury awareness, medical protocols, or equipment back then as there is today. 

Dr. Ann McKee, director of Boston University's CTE center, and a coauthor of the study, are currently conducting more research on CTE and its effects. They are examining lengths of exposure to head trauma, the age of first exposure, the lengths of playing careers, and how these relate to the risk of CTE and its pathological severity. They are also using the 177 donated brains with CTE to discover if there are any genetic risk factors of the disease.

"It certainly can be prevented," McKee said, "'That's why we really need to understand how much exposure to head trauma and what type of head trauma the body can sustain before it gets into this irreversible cascade of events." 

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Additionally, in a statement commenting on the study, the league said, "The NFL is committed to supporting scientific research into CTE and advancing progress in the prevention and treatment of head injuries. In 2016, the NFL pledged $100 million in support for independent medical research and engineering advancements in neuroscience related topics. This is in addition to the $100 million that the NFL and its partners are already spending on medical and neuroscience research."

The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC Blog previously discussed that the NFL settled a class action with ex-football players who had suffered from brain injuries, potentially paying out $4 million, to those who suffered from CTE.


The start of fall means that football season is here, and football season means cleats on turf and helmets against helmets. As spirited at American become during this time of year, it's important to remember that repetitive head trauma caused by playing football may lead to CTE or other brain injuries. It should also be noted that traumatic brain injuries can be caused by experiencing a blow to the head in a motor vehicle accident. If you or someone you know has experienced a traumatic brain injury from a car crash, contact The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free legal consultation. Let us take care of your legal trouble while you focus on improving your health.

NFL Settled A Concussion Class Action Lawsuit

Research has drawn links between football players receiving multiple blows to the head and numerous degenerative brain diseases. Due to this research, a class action lawsuit was filed in by thousands of retired professional football players against the NFL, for hiding the risk of brain injuries that comes with playing in the league. An increasing number of NFL players are affected by the league's choice to not disclose the health risks of concussions and repeated blows to the head that come with playing on the professional level. CNN Money stated that the Supreme Court sided with the players, deciding in December, 2016 to not hear an appeal of the case. Any of the men who are found to be eligible for the settlement payments must have retired before July 7, 2014, and may be awarded up to $5 million each. Settlement amounts are based on the number of years played in the NFL, the severity of the player's brain disease, and age. Over 11,000 retired football players expect to receive their portion of the lawsuit settlement this year.

Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

The New York Times reported that two of these claims were recently settled on June 16, 2017 for a combined total of $9 million. Although the two claimants have gone unnamed, one NFL player's wife, Marlene Breasley, spoke of her husband, Terry Breasley, 66, who played for three years under the San Francisco 49ers. Marlene told CNN Money how beneficial the settlement money would be for her family if they are found to be eligible. Due to his years of playing football, Beasley continues to experience the effects of more than 40 concussions from his playing years, and is currently on more than 10 medications. His illness keeps him confined to his bed as he suffers from chronic headaches and short seizures all day. 

"He has trouble speaking. Terry gets injections for the pain, but it never goes away. He sleeps for a couple hours when he can until the pain gets so bad that it wakes him up," Marlene said.  "It's [the settlement money] going to help us buy the medicines he needs, get the physical help he needs from remodeling our house to make it handicap accessible to having someone with him 24 hours a day." 

It’s unfortunate that Beasley and so many other men are suffering from brain injuries caused by playing the sport they love, because according to the Brain Injury Society (BIS), sports are a relatively uncommon source of traumatic brain injury (TBI) among the general population. In fact, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that falls are the number one source of TBIs for the non-professional football playing population of America. The second most common cause for TBIs is unintentional blunt trauma followed by motor vehicle accidents. Still, TBIs are a major cause of death and disability in the US and contribute to 30% of all injury deaths. 

Michigan Brain Injury Lawyer

People who are diagnosed with a TBI can suffer from a lifetime of effects, such as impaired memory, thinking, movement, sensation, and/or emotional function. Men and people ages 65 and up are more likely to suffer from TBIs than other members of the population, possibly explaining why NFL players are increasingly discovering the consequences of getting paid to hit their bodies against each other. According to CNN Money, there are a few types of degenerative brain diseases that also may be caused by a traumatic brain injury, that also affect how much money each ex-NFL player may be entitled to.

Degenerative Brain Diseases Caused By Traumatic Brain Injury

Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE)

 According to the Concussion Legacy Foundation, CTE is a degenerative brain disease in which "a protein called Tau forms clumps that slowly spread throughout the brain, killing brain cells." The unfortunate thing about this disease is that it can only be detected by autopsy, after a person's death. However, "early symptoms of CTE usually appear in a patient's late 20s or 30s, and affect a patient's mood and behavior. Some common changes seen include impulse control problems, aggression, depression, and paranoia." Relatives of NFL players who lost their loved ones to CTE may receive $4 million dollars from the NFL brain injury class action lawsuit settlement.

Alzheimer's and Dementia

According to the Alzheimer's Association, Alzheimer's leads to nerve cell death and tissue loss within the brain. This causes the brain to shrink dramatically and affects all of its functions. NFL players who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's may be awarded $3.5 million.

The Alzheimer's Association explains dementia as a general term used to describe a severe decline in mental ability that can effect everyday life. Doctors have a hard time determining the extent of a patient's dementia because it affects every person's brain differently. Players diagnosed with moderate dementia might be awarded $3 million in this settlement while players with early dementia may be awarded around $1.5 million.

Lou Gehrig's Disease/Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS)

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The ALS Association explains that ALS is "a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. A-myo-trophic comes from the Greek language. "A" means no. "Myo" refers to muscle, and "Trophic" means nourishment – "No muscle nourishment." When a muscle has no nourishment, it "atrophies" or wastes away. "Lateral" identifies the areas in a person's spinal cord where portions of the nerve cells that signal and control the muscles are located. As this area degenerates, it leads to scarring or hardening ("sclerosis") in the region."

Though people know about ALS because it was the disease that caused Lou Gehrig to leave his successful baseball career, the degenerative brain disease was still unknown to many in our current generation. However, many people recently became educated on the disease due to very popular, social media "Ice Bucket Challenge," which raised millions of dollars for treatment. 

Due to the severity of ALS and the fact that it doesn't have a cure, players who have been diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease may receive up to $5 million dollars in compensation from the NFL.  

Parkinson’s Disease (PD)

Parkinson's Disease, according to the Parkinson's Disease Foundation, is "a chronic and progressive movement disorder, meaning that its symptoms continue and worsen over time." "Parkinson’s involves the malfunction and death of vital nerve cells in the brain, called neurons. Parkinson's primarily affects neurons in an area of the brain called the substantia nigra. Some of these dying neurons produce dopamine, a chemical that sends messages to the part of the brain that controls movement and coordination. As PD progresses, the amount of dopamine produced in the brain decreases, leaving a person unable to control movement normally." The cause of Parkinson's is currently unknown and there is no cure as of yet. Retired NFL players diagnosed with Parkinson's may receive $3.5 million from the settlement.

Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms

The CDC lists the following as symptoms for TBIs that people who have sustained a head injury should keep an eye out for. The symptoms typically fall into four categories.

Emotional/Mood

  • Irritability
  • Sadness
  • More emotional
  • Nervousness or anxiety 

Sleep

  • Sleeping more than usual
  • Sleep less than usual
  • Trouble falling asleep

 

Thinking/Remembering

  • Difficulty thinking clearly
  • Feeling slowed down
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Difficulty remembering new information

Physical

  • Headache
  • Fuzzy or blurry vision
  • Nausea or vomiting (early on)
  • Dizziness
  • Sensitivity to noise or light
  • Balance problems
  • Feeling tired, having no energy
Detroit Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyer

While the families of these brain damaged football players might feel relieved that the compensation from the lawsuit might help them cover some medical bills, it is clear that they are more upset with the larger problem. That problem is that brain damage and brain diseases alter a person, sometimes indefinitely, and that these families aren't able to spend the same quality time with their loved ones that they used to. Some ex-NFL players are tied up in dealing with the stresses of medical appointments and medical bills instead of enjoying retirement.

While it's every child's (and some adults') dream to become a sports legend, most professional sports careers don't work out. People are more likely to sustain a head injury in a motor vehicle accident than in a Detroit Lions game! As such, anytime a person is involved in a car accident, or any time someone takes a blow to the head, it is important that they should immediately seek medical attention to rule out a traumatic brain injury.


Traumatic Brain Injuries are serious health issues that should not be ignored or taken lightly. Whether the brain injury was acquired through playing sports, a car accident, or by slip and fall, it is a good idea to err on the side of caution and seek immediate medical attention after taking a hit to the head. As the article shows, experiencing a TBI could cause long-term if not life-altering afflictions and problems for victims. If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with a TBI after an auto accident, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation with a personal injury lawyer today.

Traumatic Brain Injuries Can Cause Epilepsy

No one can predict the outcome of a motor vehicle accident. In fatal vehicle collisions, it takes just seconds for a shiny new car to become a pile of metal, rubber, and plastic. Not only are automobiles ruined in traffic crashes, but the passengers inside may be seriously injured, if not dead. That's why safety precautions must be taken to help protect passengers in the instance that they are involved in motor vehicle collisions. One such precaution is always wearing a seat belt. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) seat restraints have saved 344,448 lives since 1975. Unfortunately, however, seat belts can't do it all, as they can't prevent head bumps and even cause whiplash injuries themselves. This is dangerous because what people may not know is that a momentary head bump or skull scrape in car crashes, may lead to a much more serious type of head injury and other brain related conditions, such as epilepsy. 

What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?

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A traumatic brain injury (TBI), as defined by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, is "a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury." They can occur to anyone, from young children to older adults. TBIs can be mild, like " a brief change in mental status or consciousness, or severe, like, "an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia after the injury." Symptoms of a TBI include problems with thinking and memory, balance and sensations, language like talking, and emotions, such as depression, anxiety, and aggression. While not every head injury results in a TBI, people who sustain head injuries in automobile crashes are more likely to sustain TBIs due to the heavy force with which a head gets struck in a car collision. 


The Link Between Traumatic Brain Injuries and Epilepsy

Epilepsy is a type of brain disease that causes re-occurring seizures. Epilepsy may have a variety of causes, all depending on conditions that affect a person's brain. Some examples are a stroke or a brain tumor. TBIs can also trigger epilepsy in people, either right after an injury happens or months and even years later. Researchers have found that the more severe a TBI is, the greater chance there is that the person may develop epilepsy. 

Post-traumatic epilepsy (PTE) and post-traumatic seizures (PTS) are two types of seizures caused by a TBI. PTS are seizures occurring in the first week after a TBI, while PTE is defined by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) as one or more unprovoked seizures that occur at least one week after a TBI. In PTE cases, 86% of patients experiencing one seizure at least one week after a TBI, experienced a second seizure within two years. This means that most of the time, epilepsy takes a while to be discovered. Just when people think they are in the clear from a severe motor vehicle accident, their traumatic brain injury comes back as a different monster.

Michigan Traumatic Brain Injury Car Accident Attorney

Epilepsy is difficult to pinpoint because seizures are different for different people. Some fall, cry out, or shake, while others become confused, twitch, or believe they see, taste, or smell something unusual. The lack of a definite, clear-cut diagnosis makes handling TBIs even more of a headache. Though it may seem difficult to comprehend until one witnesses it, people that learn to recognize the symptoms of a seizure may be able to offer assistance or contact a medical provider if needed. The sudden movement of body parts, unresponsiveness, lip-smacking or chewing, fumbling movements, and not being able to speak or understand others are all common symptoms of a seizure. Bystanders can assist someone having a seizure by making sure they don't fall and turning their head to the side so anything in the mouth, including saliva, does not block their throat. Check for a heartbeat and for regular breathing, starting CPR if there are no vital signs or calling 911 to alert medical professionals.

MRIs and other neuroimaging tests are recommended following the first post-traumatic seizure, as these tests can help look for brain abnormalities that might suggest a case of PTE. Preventative medicines may be prescribed by a doctor for seizures, and clinical observations by the Epilepsy Foundation further support using drugs early on after an injury, to help suppress the development of PTE. Though it is unlikely that current medicine will completely eliminate epilepsy, it can help control or stop seizures for a majority of people. 


How To Avoid Car Crash Brain Injuries

Michigan Head Injury Car Accident Lawyer

In 2013, the leading causes of TBI-related deaths were falls for people 65 and older, and motor-vehicle crashes for people age 5-24. In an effort to reduce the number of motor vehicle accident traumatic brain injuries, safety precautions can be taken that may minimize the risk for traumatic brain injuries. Driving and riding safely is the number one step people can take towards safety. This includes wearing seat belts, using helmets on motorcycles and bicycles, turning on airbags, and seating children in passenger seats designed for them. People may also want to be mindful of where they are walking, so they may be less likely to be involved in a pedestrian car crash.

No matter what people do to increase their safety while on the road and on streets, head injuries can still occur from during car collision. Medical research and technological advancements are working to ease the pain and suffering from traumatic brain injuries, but the reality is that some people may experience epilepsy or seizures years after what they once thought to be just a simple bump to the head. TBIs are yet another consequence of car accidents, and though they cannot be completely prevented, recognizing the symptoms and responding with proper care may help car accident victims' health in the long run.


Head injuries, like those that can be caused by motor vehicle collisions, have numerous negative side effects. It is important to learn to recognize the symptoms of a traumatic brain injury, so as to help protect yourself and others. If you or someone you know has sustained a head injury or any other injury in a car crash, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC at 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.

The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC Joins The Brain Injury Association of Michigan

Brain Injury Association of Michigan

Birmingham, MI - The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC is proud to announce it has recently joined the Brain Injury Association of Michigan (BIAMI).  The BIAMI is a nonprofit organization that serves to create greater awareness of traumatic brain injury (TBI) across Michigan.

The organization connects individuals living with a brain injury to the largest statewide provider network of brain injury rehabilitation centers, medical treatment facilities, care providers, programs and top professionals.  The BIAMI works on multiple fronts, providing educational services to teach communities about brain injury, advocating to establish and preserve laws regarding brain injury, assisting brain injury research groups, and serving as a resource for accident victims who have suffered TBIs.

Our law firm was represented at the 2017 BIAMI Legal Conference to stay updated and participate in the discussions about the complex legal topics that confront car accident victims living with brain injuries.

The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC frequently handles motor vehicle lawsuits in which victims sustained a TBI. The Firm is excited to be an active member of the BIAMI so it can further its expertise of the topic, network with likeminded law firms and medical providers, and provide its clients with the resources they need to get their lives back on track.

Source: ModUp

Source: ModUp

For more information about the Brain Injury Association of Michigan, please visit http://www.biami.org/.  To learn more about The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC, please visit https://www.themichiganlawfirm.com/.

The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC is a civil litigation firm located in Birmingham, Michigan that handles a variety of personal injury lawsuits, including auto accidents, motorcycle accidents, medical provider cases, dog bites, and slip and falls.  Call us today for a free consultation at 844.4MI.FIRM (844.464.3476).


NFL Takes Precautions Against Concussions

NFL Lawsuit Attorney

The 2016 National Football League (NFL) regular season started  on Thursday, September 8, 2016. This is an exciting time of year for many NFL fans, as it is a brand new season full of hopes and dreams for their favorite NFL team.

Another exciting thing that comes with the start of the NFL season is the start of fantasy football. For many who play fantasy football, the hope for a new fantasy season can match or even sometimes exceed their excitement for the actual NFL season. Of course, one of the concerns that comes with fantasy football every year, as well as with NFL teams, is injuries to athletes that play this game. This year in the NFL, a new rule change is being implemented that is thought to help with reducing injuries. This year when a team receives the ball on a kickoff, and the play results in a touchback, the receiving team will be awarded the football at the 25-yard line.

In previous years in NFL history, teams were given the ball on only the 20-yard line after a touchback. The main reason behind this change is believed to be to try to cut down on concussions across the league. On a kickoff, players are usually moving faster than on almost any other type of play, and with 22 total players running full speed at each other on the kickoff, many injuries have resulted on kickoffs in previous years. The NFL has been trying to find ways to cut back on concussions in previous years, changing many rules and details of the game to try to avoid concussions as much as possible.

Detroit Lions Medical Injury Attorney

According to ESPN, The NFL says reported concussions in regular-season games rose 58 percent from 2014 to 2015, the highest number (182) in any of the past four years. Jeff Miller, the NFL's Senior Vice President of Health and Safety Policy said during a conference call, that the league will study what might have caused the incidence of head injuries to rise so much this season. Among the possible explanations Miller mentioned were a doubling in the number of players screened for possible concussions, "unprecedented levels of players reporting signs and signals of concussions," and that trainers who work as spotters or independent neurologists on sidelines "are much more actively participating in identifying this injury." As the season is already underway, it will be interesting to see if the new rule helps to decrease concussions from 2015 to 2016.


Brain injuries from concussions can be very serious injuries, but it isn't just NFL players who deal with concussions and the lingering issues that can stem from concussions. Concussions can also occur when involved in a motor vehicle accident, even if the accident wasn't a major one. If you or anyone you know has suffered a concussion or any other injuries from a car accident call The Michigan Law Firm today. Our attorneys are highly experienced in dealing with all types of motor vehicle accidents and will work hard to get you the help you need. Call us today, at 844.4MI.FIRM, for a free consultation.

MLB Pitcher Hit In Head By 105 MPH Line Drive

Matt Shoemaker Head Injury

One of the many dangers of playing baseball is that a ball flying over 90 miles per hour, and even sometimes over 100 miles per hour, can do some serious damage if it were to hit a player. One such scary situation involving Los Angeles Angels pitcher Matt Shoemaker occurred on September 4th. Shoemaker was pitching to Seattle Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager in the second inning of the game at Safeco Field in Seattle, when Seager ripped a line drive right back at Shoemaker, which drilled Shoemaker right in the head, as he tried to avoid it. The line drive that hit Shoemaker came off Seager's bat at a stunning 105 mph, according to MLB Statcast. The Angels pitcher fell to his knees before the Angels' trainers hurried out to the pitcher’s mound, followed by Shoemaker’s teammates, and even Kyle Seager as well. After remaining on the ground for some time, Shoemaker rose to his feet, firmly holding a towel to what appeared to be a bleeding head. He had to immediately leave the game and received a standing ovation from the Seattle crowd as he walked to the visiting team’s dugout.

Shoemaker was immediately taken to a hospital to where according to the New York Daily News, a CT scan revealed a small skull fracture and small hematoma. Shoemaker had to undergo surgery to stop bleeding in his brain. He had the procedure performed late on September 4th and was being treated by Dr. Manuel Ferreira of the University of Washington Medical Center. Los Angeles athletic trainer Adam Nevala stayed with Shoemaker until he was able to travel to Southern California.

General manager Billy Eppler provided the update on September 5th, saying Shoemaker had been receiving CT scans every 2-3 hours when the third image showed increased bleeding, shortly before 9 p.m. That’s when surgery was determined to be the next step. “The CT scan confirmed or when they actually did the operation that confirmed where the bleeding was,” Eppler said. “They were able to access that area. They were able to seal it, stop the bleeding. He was wheeled back up into recovery and is recovering fine.” As bad as this situation with Matt Shoemaker was, the fortunate side of the whole situation is that Shoemaker is still alive, and looks like he is going to be alright.


Brain injuries form sports accidents can be very serious injuries, but these same or even worse injuries can also occur when involved in a car accident. Sometimes, traumatic brain injuries don't present themselves right away. This is why it is absolutely important to immediately see a doctor following any kind of car crash. If you or anyone you know has been injured in a car accident, call The Michigan Law Firm. Our attorneys are highly experienced in dealing with all types of motor vehicle accidents and can get you the help you need. Call us today, at 844.4MI.FIRM, for a free consultation.

New Study Reveals Link Between Brain Injuries and Homelessness

Brain Injury Accident Lawyer

New evidence related to Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI) can now be linked to people who experience homelessness. Veterans, who account for one-third of the homeless, tend to be the common denominator when it comes to the relationship between homelessness and brain injuries.  

Dr. Mark L. Gordon, an endocrinologist with experience in the area of TBIs with the Millennium Health Centers, has partnered with the Warrior Angels Foundation to successfully treat over 100 veterans suffering from TBIs. The partnership has also led to detailed research and surveying of homeless people in the United States which has revealed that there is a probable relationship between homelessness and TBIs. 

Homeless In America Statistics: 

  • 69% of homeless citizens said they had been in a car accident
  • 77% asserted they had fallen off a roof or out of a tree, etc.
  • 74% reported they had been mugged
  • 75% declared they had been beaten up or hit very hard in the head
  • 80% said they had been hit hard enough to “see stars” or get their “bell rung” and confused with headaches and general irritability

In Search of Causes & Cures

Car Accident Brain Injury Lawyer

Dr. Gordon, Richard Troxell (House the Homeless), and John Lozier (National Health Care for the Homeless) are working together to identify and explore treatment of TBIs and how it directly affects homelessness. Dr. Gordon believes that TBIs are a “causative factor for accelerated hormonal deficiencies” such as depression, anger outbursts, anxiety, mood swings, memory loss, inability to concentrate, learning disabilities, and strokes. When searching for an origin, Dr. Gordon is looking at the pituitary gland, which is found at the base of the brain, and is considered the master gland and controls many other functions. Studies have shown that between 50-75% of veterans with TBIs show some loss of pituitary function after the injury. 

A potential solution for people suffering from TBIs which has proven to improve the hemostatic state of the individual even years after the initial injury is restoring the hormones (neuro-steroids and neuro-active steroids) to their pre-injury level. Dr. Gordon has said that these types of procedures have shown a 50-100% improvement in the individual. 


According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 35% of all TBIs can be attributed to falling, 17% to Traffic accidents, 16% to striking or striking into another object, and 10% caused by assault.  Brain Injuries can cause serious damage to a person's mental and physical well being. Traffic accidents, according to the CDC, are the leading cause of death related to brain injuries. Often times, TBIs cause hidden symptoms that don't immediately present themselves. If you or somebody you know has been involved in an accident that may have caused slight to severe damage to the head, call The Michigan Law Firm, PLLC.  Our attorneys understand the seriousness of head injuries and will get you the assistance you need to recover from the accident. Call us today, 844.4MI.FIRM for a free consultation.