Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of death and disability in the United States. TBIs contribute to about 30% of all injury deaths. Those who survive a TBI can face effects that last a few days, or the rest of their lives. Understanding a brain injury can be a difficult task but it’s best to start with the basics. Below are common causes, symptoms, results, and resources for victims of a traumatic brain injury.
A TBI is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that disrupts the normal function of the brain. While most people likely assume car accidents to be the primary reason brain injuries occur, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), falls are the leading cause of brain injury. Motor vehicle accidents are a close second, followed by other non-vehicle related blows to the head and assaults.
The CDC also reports that over 1.7 million people sustain a brain injury every year in the United States, with men being more likely to sustain a brain injury than women.
Common symptoms of traumatic brain injury include:
- Double vision
- Slurred speech
- Decrease in the ability to process information, maintain attention, or retain information
- Depression, aggression or other personality changes
- Impairment of physical movement and strength
An individual should immediately seek medical attention for a brain injury. If the injured person begins symptoms of a persistent headache, slurred speech, facial drooping, numbness, tingling, loss of use of any of limbs, or extreme fatigue and faintness, that individual needs to see a physician right away.
The injured person should go to an emergency room in a major medical center that has a high-level trauma center which would have a neurologist to take care of them.
Even if they feel fine, it is important for people to seek medical attention following head injuries. The injured individual can have a slow bleed that eventually causes pressure on the brain. A CT scan can make sure that there are no slow bleeds, aneurysm, blood clot, or a hematoma in the brain.
The brain is the neurological center of the body. With traumatic brain injuries, a person can sustain blindness, cognitive function loss, headaches, concussion syndrome, double vision, depression, anxiety, memory loss, sensory changes, and stroke-like responses.
Unlike many other injuries to the body that are physical and can heal with time and therapy, injuries that affect brain tissue can permanently alter and diminish cognitive abilities, personality, and the range of emotions of the victim.
If a traumatic brain injury was caused by the negligence of another person or entity, the victim may file a personal injury claim to hold the party at fault accountable. An injury attorney with TBI experience can help clients get the compensation they deserve.
The painful aftermath of a traumatic brain injury warrants compensation for the pain and suffering of the victim and their family, and a legal settlement could provide necessary assistance with medical bills.
Dealing with a brain injury can emotionally and physically taxing. While an attorney can help you through any necessary legal processes sometimes you just want to talk to someone that knows what you’re going through. Fortunately, there are several support systems throughout central Kentucky, check out the Brain Injury Alliance of Kentucky or the Brain Injury Association of America for more info.