The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “defines a traumatic brain injury (TBI) as a disruption in the normal function of the brain that can be caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head, or penetrating head injury. Everyone is at risk for a TBI, especially children and older adults.”
On average, approximately 150 Americans die from TBI-related injuries every day. See Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2019). In fact, deaths from fall-related TBI’s are on the rise, increasing by 17% from 2008-2017.
What Causes a Traumatic Brain Injury?
A TBI can be caused by many things. The National Institutes of Health have concluded that: “A TBI is caused by an external force that injures the brain. It can occur when a person’s head is hit, bumped, or jolted. For example, when the body is shaken or hit hard enough to cause the brain to slam into the skull. The leading causes of TBI are falls, motor vehicle crashes and traffic-related incidents, collisions with an object, and assaults. See https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/tbi/conditioninfo/causes.
The degree of a TBI can vary, and the symptoms can range from a nagging headache to complete paralysis. A mild TBI may cause brain dysfunction for a limited period of time, along with physical effects and emotional harm. On the other hand, more significant injuries that lead to bruising, bleeding, or tissue damage can ultimately result in permanent impairment or death.
How Would I Know Whether I Suffered a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Depending on the severity of the head injury, the symptoms can range from a headache to a comatose. Below is a list of the symptoms associated with a TBI:
- Loss of consciousness
- Dilated pupils
- Vision changes (blurred vision or seeing double, unable to tolerate bright light, loss of eye movement, blindness)
- Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) (clear or blood-tinged) appear from the ears or nose
- Dizziness and balance concerns
- Breathing problems
- Slow pulse
- Slow breathing rate with an increase in blood pressure
- Ringing in the ears or changes in hearing
- Cognitive difficulties
- Inappropriate emotional responses
- Speech difficulties (slurred speech, inability to understand or articulate words)
- Difficulty swallowing
- Body numbness or tingling
- Droopy eyelid or facial weakness
- Loss of bowel control or bladder control
How Do You Treat a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Treating TBI’s depends on the severity of the injury. Sometimes minor injuries can be treated with rest and over-the-counter medication. That said, the full extent of the severity of a TBI may not be evident until long after the initial accident. For this reason, victims must be closely monitored for symptoms that linger or become worse.
Moderate to severe injuries often require immediate medical care. Therefore, it is crucial for people that have suffered a TBI (or who think they have suffered a TBI) to seek immediate medical treatment. If you or a loved one suspects you have suffered a TBI, you should go to a hospital immediately.
Can I Recover Damages for A Traumatic Brain Injury?
People who suffer from TBI’s are often left with lingering pain and suffering, and emotional and financial burdens. In some cases, people who suffer from a TBI may require ongoing lifelong care for something that is not their fault. If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence or the actions or inactions of some company, you might be entitled to meaningful compensation. TBI’s can have serious lifelong consequences for the individual, their families, and their loved ones. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury caused by someone else’s reckless or negligent actions, contact the experienced TBI lawyers at Morrow & Sheppard LLP for a free, confidential consultation. You can call us anytime at 800-489-2216 or fill out our contact form online.