Loss of Vision, Speech & Hearing
The ability to see, speak and hear without limitation is something that is taken for granted by people who have the full use of their faculties. The loss of any one of them, however, can make it difficult – if not impossible – to work and otherwise lead a normal life. There can also be considerable emotional damage when the loss of vision, speech or hearing is brought about by a traumatic injury.
Millions of people worldwide are born partially or totally blind, deaf or speech-impaired, but many others suffer impairment later in life as a result of trauma such as a car accident, a workplace injury, medical negligence or violence. The cost to these individuals as well as society is steep, annually running into the tens of billions of dollars.
If you lost the use of your senses due to somebody else’s carelessness or recklessness, you may have the right to file a lawsuit. You may also be able to claim Social Security disability benefits because of your impairment.
To find out more about your rights and options, including whether you have a case, call Marasco & Nesselbush now or contact us online. With a dedication to personal justice and a track record of extraordinary results, we are Rhode Island’s trusted personal injury law firm.
Loss of vision can be total or partial, temporary or permanent. It can affect one eye or both eyes in the form of blurry, cloudy, dim, patchy or shadowy vision, seeing floaters or streaks, or loss of peripheral or center vision.
Depending on the severity of vision loss, daily tasks such as reading, writing, using technology, telling time, recognizing faces and simply getting around can be much more difficult.
According to Prevent Blindness America, adult vision problems cost the U.S. $51.4 billion each year in direct medical costs, other direct costs and lost productivity.
Some patients learn to cope with vision loss and live independently, but doing so may still require the use of a guide dog and occasional in-home care. Some visually impaired patients require full-time assistance, particularly the elderly.
Acquired hearing loss may develop over time as the result of prolonged exposure to high decibel levels, or it can occur suddenly, from an extremely loud noise or explosion.
The degrees of hearing loss range from mild (only soft sounds are hard to hear) to moderate (difficulty hearing normal speech) to profound (only very loud sounds are perceptible). Loss of hearing can affect one ear (unilateral) or both ears (bilateral), be symmetrical or asymmetrical, and get better, worse or remain stable over time.
Individuals with hearing loss often suffer socially and emotionally as their ability to effectively communicate with others diminishes. Productivity at work also suffers from hearing loss, and the deaf and hard of hearing often require education and social services.
A study published in the International Journal of Technology found that severe to profound hearing loss costs society nearly $300,000 per person over that person’s life. Another study found that hearing loss negatively impacts household income up to $12,000 per year.
Speech impairment or loss that is not congenital or degenerative in nature typically results from traumatic brain injury, although it can also be caused by a medication side effect, throat or tongue cancer, hearing impairment or other causes.
Loss of speech can profoundly affect a person by limiting the ability to communicate with the outside world and may require costly speech-language therapy. Aphasia, one type of impaired expression, can improve in time, but not in all cases.
Causes of Vision, Speech and Hearing Loss
The Rhode Island personal injury attorneys at Marasco & Nesselbush are available to assist clients whose loss of hearing, speech or vision was caused by the following:
- Traumatic brain injury resulting from a car accident or other motor vehicle accident, fall accident, dangerous product or assault.
- Medical malpractice such as a medication error, surgical error, or diagnostic/failure-to-treat error.
- An on-the-job injury that was caused by a third party (not your employer or a coworker).
We also help clients obtain Social Security disability benefits for their impaired hearing, speech and vision.
Receive a Free Case Review
The world is a very different place when you can’t see, speak or hear the way you once did. Through rehabilitation and time you may be able to regain full or partial use of your senses or develop new ways of coping with the loss, but you probably have concerns about how you’ll afford necessary care.
Marasco & Nesselbush understand how unforeseen accidents can turn your life upside down. Our firm is committed to helping injured Rhode Islanders, and we have obtained a well deserved reputation for receiving sizeable settlements and verdicts for our clients.
Learn all of the ways we can help you in a free consultation. Call or contact us online now for a review of your claim for no cost and with no obligations.
- Prevent Blindness America
- World Health Organization – Deafness and hearing loss
- American Speech-Language-Hearing Association – Causes of Hearing Loss in Adults
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Types of Hearing Loss
- International Journal of Technology Assessment in Health Care – The societal costs of severe to profound hearing loss in the United States
- Better Hearing Institute – The Impact of Untreated Hearing Loss on Household Income
- The University of Tennessee Medical Center – Speech Impairment/Loss
- U.S. News & World Report – Post-Stroke Speech Problems Inflate Cost of Treatment