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Deafness Injury

Some professions are more prone to a hearing injury than others. An injury that results in your losing your hearing is serious. In some cases the hearing loss is temporary, while in other cases it is permanent. The sudden loss of hearing can be quite difficult for the victim as he or she may have feelings of isolation, finding it difficult to communicate with family and friends. Injuries causing deafness often involve a blunt force trauma to head causing a brain injury. Head trauma often occurs in a car accident, a slip and fall accident, or in a construction accident. If you or someone you love are in need of a New York Injury Lawyer because you suffered partial or complete hearing loss in an accident, it is important that you contact an experienced Bronx Deafness Injury Lawyer who will review the details of your case and help you receive the compensation to which you are entitled through a personal injury claim. In addition, if during the course of the treatment for your injuries the medical staff commits medical malpractice, the party responsible for your hearing loss may be required to compensate you for the medical malpractice injury as well.

Causes of Deafness

Hearing loss can result from several different types of illnesses or injuries. A common cause is acoustic trauma. Acoustic trauma occurs when there is damage to the cochlea as a result of exposure to a high-intensity sound such as an explosion, firecracker or gunshot. Noise-induced hearing loss can also occur over time from constant exposure to loud noise. For example, working at an airport or working in a factory around loud machinery may lead to noise-induced hearing loss. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) exposure to 85 decibels of noise for more than eight hours per day can result in permanent hearing loss.

A traumatic blow to the ear or to the head can also lead to hearing loss. Trauma to the ear or the ear canal can cause bleeding and infection which can result in temporary hearing loss. Such trauma can also damage the cochlea, causing permanent hearing loss. A head injury such as a traumatic blow to the head in a car accident or slip and fall accident can lead to ossicle dislocation, resulting in hearing loss. For example, in People v. Carson, 2015 NY Slip Op 2494 (N.Y. App. Div., 2015), the victim experienced hearing loss after the defendant, Joseph Carson, hit her in the head with a gun.

Another cause of hearing loss is a medical mistake. If a doctor or some other health professional fails to properly treat a condition or makes a medical misdiagnosis, then the patient could suffer a number of medical problems including a loss of hearing. For example, in the case of McCarroll v. Rosen, 2015 NY Slip Op 30049(U) (N.Y. Sup. Ct., 2015), plaintiff Joann McCarroll suffered from Arnold Chiari malformation and cervical spine disc pathology. As part of her treatment she received a brain MRI of April 28, 2006. Her doctor misinterpreted the MRI, failing to diagnose the presence of an abnormality or mass epicentered at the skull base. As a result McCarroll suffered intermittent hearing loss, dizziness, and visual disturbances. McCarroll filed a medical malpractice claim against the medical professionals responsible for her care.

Symptoms of damage to the ear include:

  • Ringing, roaring, hissing, or buzzing in the ear
  • Ear pain, itching, or irritation
  • Fluid leaking from the ear
  • Dizziness
  • Slurred speech

In some cases hearing loss occurs over time, while in other cases it happens immediately after the trauma.

Pursuing Damages

An injured victim who loses the ability to hear will incur significant medical expenses from medical treatment and assistive technology. Through a personal injury lawsuit the person whose negligence resulted in the victim's deafness would be held financially accountable. The victim may be able to recover past medical expenses as well as future expenses. A personal injury lawsuit may also result in the victim receiving compensation for the wages he or she lost, as well as for loss of future earning capacity. Becoming deaf is a physically, emotionally and psychologically painful experience. Therefore, the victim may also sue for pain and suffering.

Bronx Deafness Injury Lawyer

If you or a loved one was injured in an accident that left you with a hearing loss, you should contact an experienced attorney who understands the legal issues associated with personal injury cases as well as the medical issues associated with hearing loss. Stephen Bilkis and Associates, PLLC is experienced in handling personal injury cases stemming from auto, truck, motorcycle, boat, and construction accidents. Contact us at 800.696.9529 to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case.

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