With all its complexities, the human brain is the most important organ in the human body. It controls all bodily functions, stores our memories and houses our thoughts. Not surprisingly, brain injuries are a serious public health problem potentially associated with long-term disabilities and billions in medical costs. One diagnosis that is increasingly common is that of traumatic brain injury (TBI).
TBI-cellular damage to the brain caused by a physical injury-occurs when the brain collides with the inside of the skull as a result of a blow, jolt, penetrating object or bump. Concussions, skull fractures and contusions are commonly known types of TBI. Other types include shaken baby syndrome (SBS), shearing or nerve damage, oxygen deprivation and hematomas.
Symptoms depend on the degree of damage. Loss of consciousness and amnesia are associated with TBI. Sensory defects; impaired language, reasoning, memory and cognitive skills; and mental health issues such as depression, anxiety or personality changes are other common symptoms. A TBI may increase one’s risk of Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and other neurological conditions.
Nearly 1.7 million Americans sustain TBIs each year. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), TBIs are associated with more than a third of injury-related deaths in the United States. While falls and sports-related injuries account for a significant number, car accidents are the cause in 17 percent of all cases.
In the treatment and management of TBI, rehabilitation, medication management, counseling and neurological evaluations are possible parts of a patient’s treatment plan. Depending on the severity of damage or the cause, a person might never make a full recovery. In those instances, civil and administrative remedies can be pursued.
TBI can have lasting effects on a person’s life and that of his or her family. While taking precautions might not insulate an individual from harm, knowing about the causes, treatments and remedies available can help a person maintain or regain his or her quality of life.
If you or someone you love has suffered from a traumatic brain injury, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. A knowledgeable personal injury lawyer can assess your case and help you get the compensation you deserve. For more information, contact an attorney today.