CLIENT STORIES

Real case studies from our clients.

SHELBY WUNCH

WASHINGTON

Shelby was a passenger in a car riding with her friend when a semi-truck suddenly turned in front of their car. They hit the bottom of the trailer, nearly taking the top of the car off. She was knocked unconscious. She had numerous internal injuries as well. She spent a week in Harborview, and was released. She came home to a mountain of medical bills. The trucking company insurance company was not willing to help her with the bills, and told her they would only pay if she was willing to settle for a little more than what the medical bills were. She would not settle because she still had a host of unexplained symptoms. None of her doctors addressed her brain injury. She had constant nausea, vomiting several times a day. She was no longer able to work.

She contacted Scott, and after giving her the names of various medical specialists, she was able to start finding answers. She was diagnosed with a Vegas nerve injury, which is a nerve that goes from the brain to the stomach, and controls the stomach’s ability to contract and process food. When it stopped working, she was unable to process food, and became constantly nauseous. She also had a pituitary injury, that affected her energy level, thinking ability, weight level, and ability to get out in the world. Scott directed her to the right doctors who were able to diagnose her and get her on the right medication to restore her quality of life. However, her future medical bills would run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, and the insurance carrier trivialized her injuries as not being related to the crash.

Scott filed suit against the trucking company, and after sending her to a doctor hired by the insurance company, that doctor agreed with Scott that indeed she had a pituitary and Vegas nerve injury. The trucking company and the insurance company then had to change their tune, and paid their complete policy limits available. Shelby got the help she needed to keep her quality of life intact, and make sure her medication and future medical care would always be taken care of so she would never have to rely on anyone else to pay her bills.

M.W.

kent, wa

MW was riding his bicycle in a bike lane in Kent. He was a 24 year old elite cyclist in excellent shape. A driver of a truck in the lane next to him suddenly turned right and nicked MW, making him fall off his bike. He was wearing his helmet. However, when he fell to the ground, his head struck the pavement along with his left shoulder. His initial injuries did not seem too serious, but he was dazed and confused at the scene and for a few weeks after that. He did not know he had a concussion. He received a short course of physical therapy and chiropractic care for his orthopedic injuries. After a few weeks, his mental fogginess went away, but his physical injuries continued to bother him. MW thought he was on the road to recovery, but 2-3 months after the collision, he started feeling very fatigued, the mental fogginess returned, he lost all interest in work and social interactions, and lost his libido. Because he had improved following his initial concussion, none of his doctors thought his concussion could be playing a role causing his symptoms. After testing him for numerous other conditions, he was finally tested by his primary care doctor for his testosterone levels, which came in extremely low.

He was then referred to an endocrinologist with experience in brain injury, who performed further pituitary testing on MW. His pituitary gland was found to be damaged and unable to produce testosterone at all, and could produce very little human growth hormone. As a result, MW was rendered functionally sterile from the loss of testosterone, and faced many additional health issues if he did not get onto human growth hormone replacement.

Scott Blair took his case on, even though this type of injury was virtually unrecognized in 2013 by many in the medical and legal community as being the result of a brain injury. Remarkably, between 30-50% of brain injuries result in pituitary injuries, even though this fact was not commonly known by many in the medical community. After more than two years of studying pituitary disorders and their relation to brain injury, consulting with the leading neuro-endocrinologists in the area, Scott realized that MW’s case was unique in that virtually no other lawyers had ever prosecuted this type of injury before, and that he needed to get the word out so other victims of brain injury could get the help they needed to get their lives back.

MW was a self employed insurance agent whose health plan would not cover all of his expenses. After learning that a lifetime of testosterone and human growth hormone injections would cost MW over $700,000, Scott knew that since MW got only one chance to hold the at fault party responsible for all the future help he needed, he had to make this case count. Scott presented his extensive settlement brochure and research to the insurance carrier for the truck driver, and it promptly paid its substantial policy limits.

When MW then turned the claim over to his own insurance carrier on an underinsured motorist claim, he was told the case was not worth any more than what the responsible party had already paid. The insurer relied upon a psychiatrist from New York to say that MW’s doctors were all wrong. They even questioned the credibility of MW, their own sales agent. Scott then retained a local world class expert in neuro-endocrinology to rebut the insurance company’s hired gun, and after another year delay, his carrier finally admitted MW’s experts were correct and paid its policy limits as well.

As a result, MW’s medical future is now secure. MW’s case has paved the way for Brain Injury Law of Seattle to help many other folks like MW who have suffered a devastating brain injury. Scott Blair was proud to have been able to help MW and many others like him gain a better quality of life following a brain injury.

Looking for Answers?

The Pituitary Injury Foundation was established to help educate the public about the importance of pituitary injuries caused by trauma, and the significant effects these injuries can have on people who may not even know they have one.

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