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Erik MagrakenThis Blog is authored by British Columbia ICBC injury claims lawyer Erik Magraken. Erik is a partner with the British Columbia personal injury law-firm MacIsaac & Company. He restricts his practice exclusively to plaintiff-only personal injury claims with a particular emphasis on ICBC injury claims involving orthopaedic injuries and complex soft tissue injuries. Please visit often for the latest developments in matters concerning BC personal injury claims and ICBC claims

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Archive for the ‘ICBC Headache Cases’ Category

$65,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Concussion with Lingering Headaches

January 3rd, 2017

Adding to this site’s archived cases addressing damages for traumatic brain injury, reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, New Westminster Registry, assessing damages for a concussion with lingering headaches.

In today’s case (Barr v. Accurate Transmission and Driveline) the Plaintiff was struck by a vehicle while in a cross walk.  She sustained a concussion with various lingering post concussive symptoms.

In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $65,000 Mr. Justice Williams provided the following reasons:

[15]         Ms. Barr’s principal injury was diagnosed as a closed head injury. In the report of Dr. Tessler, the neurologist, it is reported that she “likely sustained a Mild Concussive Injury or Mild Traumatic Brain Injury at the lower end of the spectrum of such injuries.”

[16]         Following her release from the hospital, Ms. Barr saw her family doctor, Dr. McCarthy. I note that Ms. Barr had also been under Dr. McCarthy’s care with respect to the problems she had been experiencing as a result of the workplace difficulties.

[17]         In her report and her trial testimony, Dr. McCarthy described the plaintiff’s symptoms following the accident as well as her observations and recommendations over the ensuing months. These included soft tissue injuries entailing extensive bruising and tenderness and also a series of symptoms that are collectively characterized as post-concussion syndrome: complaint of headache, dizziness, nausea, as well as a heightened sensitivity to light and activity. The bruising and associated discomfort resolved in a fairly short time; the post-concussion symptoms continued for a longer time, but Ms. Barr was able to increase her activities, with her dizziness and nausea ultimately resolving. The only noted residual symptom was occasional headache, dealt with by rest and over-the-counter medication.

[18]         The plaintiff described the aftereffects of the motor vehicle accident, beyond the physical bruising. She said she had episodes of headache, that her memory was less reliable, and that her concentration abilities were diminished. She said as well that her mood was affected, in that she was less cheerful and patient, particularly with her husband.

36]         In my view, the injuries sustained in the accident had a reasonably serious impact on Ms. Barr, both in terms of the accident’s immediate aftermath, and its longer term effects. These lingering effects have impacted her self-confidence and the range of leisure activities she can pursue. Moreover, they have adversely affected her mood and outlook.

[37]         That, in turn, has impaired her relationship with her husband. In this context, I note that he is somewhat compromised, in that he has a significant short-term memory deficit. Consequently, he relies on the plaintiff to be the strong one in the family. I am satisfied that her competence and confidence to fulfill this role have been diminished.

[38]         There is as well the matter of the plaintiff’s headaches. Those have not resolved; they still occur from time to time. I am satisfied that that condition is in part attributable to the accident.

[39]         Finally, I note that, prior to the accident, Ms. Barr was what I would describe as an otherwise healthy person just embarking upon what should be a special time of her life, her retirement. These injuries will, to some degree, negatively affect this period of her life.

[43]         In the result, having taken into account the authorities to which I have been referred, and the circumstances as I find them to be, it is my conclusion that an appropriate award of non-pecuniary damages is $65,000.


$85,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Soft Tissue Injuries and Headaches

August 15th, 2016

Adding to this site’s soft tissue injury non-pecuniary damage database, reasons for judgement were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for chronic soft tissue injuries with associated headaches.

In this week’s case (Picton v. Fredericks) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2008 vehicle collision that the Defendant admitted responsibility for.  The Plaintiff suffered various injuries which were ongoing at the time of trial and expected to linger into the future.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $85,000 Mr. Justice Williams made the following findings:

[37]         I conclude that Ms. Picton did sustain injuries in the course of the motor vehicle accident and that substantial discomfort has persisted for her. I am not minded to accept that all of the discomfort and all of the lost time is attributable to the accident. I also conclude that, while there was not insignificant discomfort, its effect upon her ability to do her usual activities and to engage in physical activities was significant but not to the extent she seemed to suggest. For example, I am inclined to accept that, from time to time, she engaged in activities such as golfing and snowboarding. I also believe that she continued to pursue her fitness regime, although in a somewhat diminished way.

[38]         I am satisfied that Ms. Picton sustained soft tissue injuries in the accident, resulting in neck, shoulder, and back pain and headaches. The neck, shoulder, and back pain have not resolved but continue, albeit less intensely. I am satisfied that she continues to deal with headaches; the frequency may not be as great as she contends, but I accept that she does occasionally experience very significant discomfort from those headaches. I also accept the evidence before me that the Botox treatments she receives are substantially effective in enabling her to deal with the discomfort of those headaches…

[51]         In summary, I conclude that Ms. Picton has suffered pain and discomfort from the accident, that it has impacted upon various aspects of her life, and that those effects continue. I am also satisfied that the ongoing Botox treatment is a meaningful contributor to mitigating the discomfort she experiences. I accept that the effects of the accident impacted upon her work and social life.

[52]         That said, I also recognize that there were other factors at play, including the psychological distress that she has experienced separate and apart from the accident. I find no basis to attribute that to the defendant’s conduct, and, accordingly, the effect of that cannot be included in the analysis of what award of damages will properly compensate the plaintiff for her pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life as resulting from the defendant’s negligence…

[58]         As stated above, my conclusion is that the injuries resulting from the accident had a moderately serious impact upon Ms. Picton’s life. She has experienced pain and suffering, and her enjoyment of life has been compromised in a number of ways. I also conclude that the effects of the collision are not the sole cause for her difficulties; her pre-existing psychological problems have had a real role in causing those. Ms. Picton’s situation is in keeping with the “crumbling skull” rule as noted in Athey v. Leonati, [1996] 3 SCR 458, at paras. 34–35. The damages that this Court awards must reflect that distinction. The defendant should not be required to compensate Ms. Picton for effects she would have experienced anyway.

[59]         As well, my award is informed by my view that she has, fortunately, by availing herself of the Botox treatment program, been able to find a way to substantially overcome the discomfort of headache. I intend to provide an award of damages for her future care that will provide for that relief, going forward. Accordingly, I expect that her discomfort will be quite significantly relieved.

[60]         In the result, I find that a fit and appropriate award of damages under this head is $85,000.


$85,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Persisting Headaches

June 13th, 2016

Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing damages for long standing headaches caused by a vehicle collision.

In today’s case (Woelders v. Gaudette) the Plaintiff was involved in a rear end collision that the Defendant admitted fault for.  The Plaintiff suffered a variety of injuries some of which recovered and some of which did not.  By the time of trial, some 8 years following the collision, the Plaintiff continued to suffer with ongoing headaches and associated symptoms which were expected to continue into the future.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $85,000 Madam Justice Ballance provided the following reasons:

[150]     Ms. Woelders was 31 years old when the Accident happened.  For more than six years, she has been plagued by headaches and pain in her neck/upper back/right shoulder region and in her face and jaw, together with a simmering muscle tension that can transform into pain.  The intensity and frequency of Ms. Woelders’ chronic symptoms have declined over the years and her overall condition has improved in large measure due to her sheer grit and determination (to her credit) coupled with her diligent rehabilitation efforts and implementation of pain management strategies.  Even so, and while there is a slim chance she may enjoy some marginal improvement going forward, her symptoms are enduring and continue to be problematic and remain susceptible to exacerbation by commonplace tasks and maneuvers at work, at home and recreationally.

[151]     The ill‑effects of the Accident have negatively impacted the quality and enjoyment of Ms. Woelders’ interactions with her children.  She experienced pain and difficulty nursing her youngest and lifting and carrying both her children.  She is reluctant to pick them up for fear she will trigger her symptoms.  She goes through much of her life on-guard, evaluating whether certain movements will activate her symptoms and trying to make the modifications that may be required.

[152]     Ms. Woelders is from a close‑knit family.  Since the Accident, she has curtailed her participation in family gatherings, has all but ceased organizing them, and feels the need to leave get‑togethers early when her symptoms flare.

[153]     I accept the evidence of Ms. Woelders’ twin sister, Ann Pimentel, to the effect that Ms. Woelders was in peak physical condition before the Accident.  Ms. Pimentel spoke with emotion about how her sister’s injuries have visibly aged her and that she had lost her “spark” after the Accident.  Ms. Woelders’ husband and mother gave similar testimony, which I also accept.

[154]     Ms. Woelders’ formerly high-energy and optimistic personality has been overshadowed by a less positive, more serious self with less energy and spark.  I accept her mother’s evidence that she has recently made a point of taking the children after school on Fridays primarily because her daughter is drained at the end of the work week and needs time to rest and rejuvenate.

[155]     The medical evidence indicates that Ms. Woelders will be prone to headaches and periods of aggravation of her unresolved symptoms for years to come, and likely indefinitely to one degree or another.  In prior cases, I have observed that enduring pain, even when it is intermittent, can compel unfavourable adjustments to one’s work life and lifestyle and cloud the pleasures of life, as it clearly has in Ms. Woelders’ case.  Taking care to not aggravate her residual symptoms and trying to manage her pain, even during the times that things seem to be under control, has become part of Ms. Woelders’ everyday life or, as she aptly put it, her “new normal”.  This is an unwelcome new reality for Ms. Woelders and her family.

[156]     Ms. Woelders finds certain kinds of housework difficult.  Although she continues to perform most of her pre‑Accident share of the housekeeping, it is not done to her pre‑Accident standards.  The evidence concerning her compromised housekeeping capacity was under‑developed at trial.  I accept that she has impairments in this regard but am not persuaded that they justify a stand-alone award of damages as Ms. Woelders has urged.  Instead, I have considered it as a factor in the assessment of her non-pecuniary damages.

[157]     I have reviewed the authorities placed before me by counsel.  The cases submitted by the defendant are, for the most part, factually distinguishable in material ways and are less instructive than those relied by Ms. Woelders.  In any event, the case law only provides rough guidelines for what is, at its core, a highly individualized assessment: Karim v. Li, 2015 BCSC 498 at para. 120.  Having regard to the Stapley factors and to the other case authorities in the context of the evidence in the case at hand, in my opinion, a fair and reasonable award for Ms. Woelders’ non-pecuniary damages is $85,000.


$90,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment For Chronic Migraine Headaches

August 20th, 2015

Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Nanaimo Registry, assessing damages for chronic migraine headaches along with a low back injury caused by a collision.

In today’s case (MacDonald v. Joseph) the Plaintiff was injured in a 2011 head on collision caused by the Defendant.  The Plaintiff suffered a variety of injuries, some of which recovered but was left with a legacy of chronic migraine headaches and low back pain.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $90,000 Madam Justice Dillon provided the following reasons:

[21]         The plaintiff had substantially recovered from the accident after 18 months but he continued to suffer and continues to suffer accident caused symptoms related to migraine headaches, lower back pain and occasional neck pain. The headaches suffered as a result of the accident are of a different nature and consistency than any headaches before the accident which dated back to 2009 and were not medically treated. The treatment for chronic headache related to head and neck trauma is difficult and often unhelpful, according to Dr. Robinson who considered that the plaintiff was not a candidate for preventative medications. He expected the plaintiff to have recurring headaches for the next three to five years with a definite risk for persisting headaches indefinitely. These would not be expected to be a “substantial impediment” in continuing with the plaintiff’s janitorial career.

[22]         Decisions in similar cases presented by counsel suggest a range for the non-pecuniary damages suffered by the plaintiff from $55,000 to $100,000. In my view, the plaintiff here suffers headaches more frequently at present than the plaintiff in Sandhu v. Gabri, 2014 BCSC 2283. The nature of his job doing heavy physical work places him in a more precarious position at work than the plaintiff in Rutledge v. Jimmie, 2014 BCSC 41. The plaintiff was off work for a considerably longer period than the plaintiff in Wepryk v. Juraschka, 2012 BCSC 974. At the same time, the plaintiff is not in constant pain as was the plaintiff in Smith v. Fremlin, 2013 BCSC 800 and has not developed psychological or pain disorders as a result of the accident as the plaintiff did in Roth v. Hes, 2015 BCSC 161. Nonetheless, the plaintiff’s prognosis of persisting debilitative headaches into the future with unresolved low back and neck pain more than four years after the accident place him at the higher end of the range. Non-pecuniary damages are awarded in the amount of $90,000.


$85,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment For Persistent Soft Tissue Injuries and Headaches

March 25th, 2015

Reasons for judgement were released today by the BC Supreme Court, Nanaimo Registry, assessing damages for chronic soft tissue injuries and headaches following a collision.

In today’s case (Snidal v. Spires) the Plaintiff, who was 20 at the time, was involved in a 2010 collision in Parksville BC.  The Defendant admitted fault.  The Plaintiff suffered persistent soft tissue injuries and headaches which were partly disabling and not expected to improve.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $85,000 Mr. Justice Fitch provided the following reasons:

[3]             The accident caused persistent soft tissue injuries to the plaintiff’s neck, back and right shoulder.  She continues to experience neck, back and shoulder pain – particularly along the top of her right shoulder.  She has suffered from headaches since the accident, some of which are debilitating…

[131]     The plaintiff is a young woman.  More than four years from the date of the accident, she continues to experience fairly constant pain and occasionally debilitating headaches.  Although her symptoms have likely plateaued, they are now chronic in nature and will be a permanent and regular feature of her daily existence.

[132]     The plaintiff is no longer able to enjoy her favourite recreational activities, nor the active lifestyle she once enjoyed.

[133]     She has become more withdrawn.  Her self-esteem and sense of self-worth were seriously compromised in the aftermath of the accident.

[134]     She experienced a major depressive disorder attributable to the accident and will likely experience some residual, but manageable, symptoms of that disorder in the future.

[135]     In all the circumstances of this case, and applying the factors in Stapley v. Hejslet, I consider an award of $85,000 for non-pecuniary damages to be just and appropriate.


$70,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Soft Tissue Injuries and Headaches

April 4th, 2014

Reasons for judgement were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Vernon Registry, assessing damages for chronic soft tissue injuries.

In this week’s case (Lewis v. Scheer) the plaintiff was involved in a “significant” collision in 2010. The Defendant admitted liability. The collision caused various soft tissue injuries and headaches which lingered at the time of trial.  The Plaintiff had some pre-existing symptoms which left her susceptible  to developing chronic pain.  Her symptoms were expected to carry into the future with optimism that they can be reduced with weight loss and exercise.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $70,000 Mr. Justice Funt provided the following reasons:

[9]             In general terms, the plaintiff’s injuries involve her back, spine, shoulders and neck.  She has daily headaches and has chronic pain…

[18]         The three doctors were in general agreement that the plaintiff’s ongoing symptoms of daily headaches and pain affecting her neck, chest, shoulders and spine were caused by the MVA.  Dr. Travlos noted in his November 14, 2011 report that the plaintiff “was likely vulnerable to injury and the development of more chronic symptoms, given some of the pre-accident complaints she had”…

[22]         The medical evidence recognizes that the pain will be ongoing although it may reduce as a result of the recommended steps to be taken.  These steps include losing weight, a focus on functionality and not on pain, a regimen of exercise and activity, and the reduction of the medication the plaintiff is currently taking…

[35]         As noted, the plaintiff will have ongoing pain.  The focus for the future is on improving function.  In particular, the pain has affected and will affect her enjoyment of life, family and social relationships, and lifestyle.  The Court will award $70,000 inclusive of housekeeping capacity.  The plaintiff will be able to perform housekeeping functions, albeit with degrees of pain depending on the particular activity.

 

 

 


$55,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment For Chronic Headaches Secondary To Neck Injury

January 15th, 2014

Adding to this site’s archived caselaw addressing damages for headaches, reasons for judgment were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Prince George Registry, dealing with such an injury.

In this week’s case (Rutledge v. Jimmie) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2011 collision in Quesnel.  The Defendant was found fully at fault.  The Plaintiff suffered a neck injury which caused secondary headaches which continued at the time of trial and were expected to linger into the future.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $55,000 Mr. Justice Tindale provided the following reasons:

100]     The plaintiff, based on the preponderance of evidence, has clearly established that the motor vehicle accident caused him to have chronic post- traumatic headaches related to a neck injury.

[101]     This injury has caused significant changes to his lifestyle, particularly to his passion for powerlifting. He has also had to modify his lifestyle with regard to recreational activities, activities at home and some of his activities at work. I am mindful that the plaintiff did not miss any employment as a result of this accident; however, I also accept that he is a stoic individual and persevered in his employment…

[103]     Dr. Robinson opined that despite the success of the Botox treatment, the plaintiff’s headaches may continue to linger for many years to come although at a lower frequency and severity than the plaintiff is experiencing now.

[104]     The majority of the cases relied on by the plaintiff have fact patterns which are far more serious than the case at bar. Likewise, the cases relied on by the third party do not appropriately address the significant lifestyle changes and pain suffered by the plaintiff.

[105]     In my view the appropriate award for non-pecuniary damages is $55,000.


$65,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Frontal Headaches

March 6th, 2013

Reasons for judgment were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Vancouver Registry, assessing non-pecuniary damages for chronic headaches caused by a motor vehicle collision.

In this week’s case (Murphy v. Obrien) the Plaintiff was involved in a 2007 collision.  The Defendant accepted liability.  The Plaintiff suffered various soft tissue injuries which posed problems but the most debilitating consequence were chronic frontal headaches which were still symptomatic at the time of trial and expected to continue into the future.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $65,000 Mr. Justice Steeves provided the following reasons:

[51]         There is general acceptance among the experts that the plaintiff suffered a soft tissue injury to his neck on May 17, 2007. There was no fracture, dislocation or nerve root injury. There is restricted range of motion in all directions and even simple tasks such as reading bring on headaches and neck pain. The plaintiff testified that, at times, he actually vomits because of the pain from his headaches. He has tried various treatments with some affect. The most recent has been Botox injections which have given him some relief. For example, Dr. Tsui administered the injections and, in a report dated May 10, 2012, he reported that the plaintiff said “the migrainous headaches have abated since the last treatment.” Similarly a report dated August 15, 2012 reported a “good response in terms of the migraines.” Despite this improvement the frontal headaches continue. The plaintiff’s evidence about his headaches is consistent with that of Dr. Tsui.

[52]         Therefore, the current situation is that the severe migrainous headaches have abated but the frontal headaches remain and they are chronic. I conclude that these headaches, and the neck pain, are as a result of the May 2007 motor vehicle accident. Further, these symptoms are independent of any problems with the left knee although, as will be seen, the left knee is certainly a relevant and complicating factor. These headaches are obviously very real for the plaintiff, with the consequences noted, and they are consistent with the medical evidence…

[62]         Overall, I conclude that an amount of $65,000 is an appropriate amount for non-pecuniary damages in this case. That figure recognizes the chronic frontal headaches. It also recognizes the undoubted emotional toll the headaches have had on his life, including his family, friends and the limitations on activities he used to do before the 2007 accident. And, it recognizes that pain medications for the left knee have played a role in the current situation.

For more BC non-pecuniary assessments for headaches you can click here to search this site’s archives.


Court Considers It "Unsafe" To Rely on Defence Doctor's Opinion In Chronic Headache Case

October 4th, 2012

In my continued efforts to highlight judicial scrutiny of expert testimony in BC injury litigation, reasons for judgement were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Nanaimo Registry, finding an expert “displayed a somewhat compromised objectivity” and that it was “unsafe” to rely on his opinion.

In this week’s case (Smith v. Moshrefzadeh) the 54 year old plaintiff was injured in a rear end collision in 2008.  As a result she suffered from soft tissue injuries to her neck and shoulders which caused chronic headaches.  At trial the Defendant produced an orthopaedic surgeon who provided opinion evidence that the probability that the crash resulted in the chronic symptoms was “negligible“.  Madam Justice Dardi did not accept this evidence and provided the following critical comments:

[62]         I accept the opinions of Dr. Helper, Dr. Robinson and Dr. Craig and, where they differed, I prefer their opinions to that of Dr. Wahl.  I found each of Dr. Robinson, Dr. Helper, and Dr. Craig, who are very well-qualified and experienced practitioners, to be careful and fair-minded in their testimony.  Their opinions, without exception, were not weakened in cross-examination.  Each of the doctors persuasively discounted Dr. Wahl’s opinion that the degeneration of Ms. Smith’s cervical spine shown on her x-rays is the cause of her current symptoms.  While Dr. Wahl is no doubt a well-qualified orthopaedic surgeon, his practice is focused on the surgical management, not the medical management, of the spine.  Dr. Wahl clearly had not reviewed Ms. Smith’s medical records as carefully as the other expert witnesses and as I mentioned earlier his report was predicated on a misconception as to the timing  of the onset of Ms. Smith’s symptoms.  Given the significant concessions he made in cross-examination and the Court’s impression that he displayed a somewhat compromised objectivity in preparing his report, I consider it unsafe to rely on his opinion.

In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $80,000 the court provided the following reasons:

[65]         In summary on this point, Ms. Smith’s chronic headaches and neck and upper back pain and discomfort which were caused by the accident have persisted for some three and a half years.  She experiences episodic flare-ups.  The pain fluctuates in intensity and is aggravated by physical activity.  Ms. Smith’s symptoms are exacerbated by the physical demands of the commercial salmon and herring fisheries.  She can no longer engage in the prawn fishery.  She has constant and daily headaches which vary in intensity.  The headaches are usually of a mild to moderate severity, but at least a few times per week they become severe enough that she needs to rest in a quiet environment.  For the most part, however, even though she describes feeling like she is “hanging on by a thread”, she forces herself to carry on with her fishing work and with maintaining her household routines and family life.  In order to carry on, she takes prescription medication on a daily basis.

[66]         There is a possibility that, by undertaking the treatments recommended by the specialists who testified at trial, Ms. Smith will experience some improvement in her symptoms and will be able to manage her pain and discomfort more effectively.  However, I find that it is unlikely that she will make a full recovery to her pre-accident status…

[76]         I have reviewed all of the authorities provided by both counsel.  Although the cases are instructive, I do not propose to review them in detail as they only provide general guidelines.  In broad terms, the cases relied upon by the defence involve plaintiffs with symptoms that had significantly improved by trial.  In considering Ms. Smith’s particular circumstances, I conclude that a fair and reasonable award for non-pecuniary damages is $80,000.


$70,000 Non-Pecuniary Assessment for Chronic Headache Disorders

July 24th, 2012

Reasons for judgement were released this week by the BC Supreme Court, Vernon Registry, assessing damages for a chronic headache disorder caused as a result of a motor vehicle collision.

In this week’s case (Fennell v. Herbert) the Plaintiff was involved in a ‘quite violent’ collision in 1998 when she was 8 years old.  Liability was admitted focussing the trial on an assessment of damages.  The trial proceeded summarily as there were no issues as to the legitimacy of the plaintiff’s symptoms nor to their connection to the collision.  In assessing non-pecuniary damages at $70,000 the court summarized the following medical evidence and provided the following reasons:

[4] As a result of the motor vehicle accident, the plaintiff suffered soft tissue injuries to her neck and lower back and headaches started within days of the collision. The headaches and neck pain have continued ever since and it is the headaches that are the most debilitating and are now considered chronic.

[5] Dr. Robinson, who is a neurologist that specializes in pain disorders stated in his report that:

In all likelihood she will continue to have chronic headache and neck pain indefinitely. This will have a negative impact on her quality of life, as well as occasionally resulting in an inability to work, attend school, or socialize…

[7] Dr. Laidlow, a physical medicine and rehabilitation specialist, in a report dated April 28, 2010, noted that the plaintiff had neck pain, back pain, and two types of headaches. His opinion was that her neck and lower back pain was myofascial pain caused by musculoligamentous strain at the neck and lower back at the time of the accident. Dr. Laidlow recommended that she see a neurologist. Dr. Robinson’s report was dated August 9, 2011. He noted that as a result of the accident she probably sustained soft tissue injury to her neck and shoulders and developed chronic headaches relating to the neck injury:

I believe that she probably did develop chronic headaches relating to neck injury as a result of the January 30, 1998 motor vehicle accident. As a result of that accident, she has ongoing neck and shoulder discomfort present constantly. The pain is aggravated by physical activity whereupon there is an increase in her head pain.

I believe that it is possible that she did develop an increased predisposition to headache reflecting migraine in her early teenage years. However, I doubt that she would have developed a constant headache or as frequent severe episodes had the lingering effects motor vehicle accident not been present.

In essence, I believe that her current headache difficulties are primarily related to chronic pain involving her neck secondary to the motor vehicle accident of January 30, 1998, superimposed upon which is a predisposition to headaches. Although it is impossible to be definitive I believe that she probably would not have developed any substantial problems with headaches if the accident had not occurred.

In all likelihood she will continue to have chronic headaches and neck pain indefinitely. This will have a negative impact on her quality of life, as well as occasionally resulting in an inability to work, attend school, or socialize. I doubt that her headache disorder will worsen or that it will have a negative impact upon her post-secondary education or for that matter her career potential.

[8] Dr. Laidlow also stated:

I do feel that she should be able to go to school and do any work activities. I think she will also be able to do any recreational activities that she chooses…

[15] I accept the evidence of the plaintiff. I find that under the heading of general damages for loss of enjoyment of life, given her young age and the severity of pain and discomfort she has suffered, she is entitled to general damages in the amount of $70,000. Also included is a component for loss of housekeeping capacity.