Understanding Traumatic Brain Injuries
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is commonly caused by impact forces in a car accident. A concussion injury can also be caused while playing contact sports, slipping and falling, and by being hit by an object or a person. The root meaning of the word concussion means “to shake violently.” Concussions are common injuries, but the fact that they are invisible does not mean the recovery will be smooth.
Car Accidents And Brain Injuries
Car accidents are among the most common causes of brain injuries. A driver or front-seat passenger is susceptible to an injury caused by the head striking the windshield or steering wheel. Any occupant of a vehicle may suffer from a concussion caused by the head shaking rapidly. Someone with a diffuse axonal injury, caused by the brain rapidly shifting inside the skull, may enter a coma temporarily or permanently. In car-truck accidents, traumatic injuries involving skull fractures may leave a survivor with grave long-term disabilities.
Falls And Brain Injuries
A head injury can be a hazardous consequence of slip-and-fall accidents on ice or slippery floor surfaces, as well as falls from heights. No matter what the cause or how minor you feel the injury may be, it’s always important to be seen by a medical professional, preferably a doctor who works specifically with brain injuries.
When there is negligence, it is also in your best interest to speak with an attorney who handles personal injury cases — the sooner, the better. The Stuckey Firm is committed to getting clients access to top-notch, cutting-edge treatment appropriate to the type and severity of a brain injury. We fight for fair compensation to cover the best treatments available for brain injuries suffered through someone else’s acts of negligence.
Types Of TBIs
Head injuries encompass a wide spectrum of harm to the head, including:
- Closed head injuries
- Concussions: A blow to the head that causes a rapid movement of the head back and forth may result in shaking of the brain. Repeated concussions are known to cause common long-term effects, including headaches, moodiness, personality changes and difficulty concentrating.
- Contusions: A bruising of the brain, a contusion, is often accompanied by unconsciousness and hemorrhaging from vessels into the brain. The bleeding of the brain may have long-term effects such as balance and memory problems.
- Anoxic injury: Someone who is deprived of oxygen may suffer from an anoxic injury. A worst-case scenario may be perpetual unconsciousness in a vegetative state.
- Open head injuries: Penetration of the skull or any injury that creates an opening in the skull will take a very long time to heal from. Someone who has suffered an open head brain injury may need a metal plate permanently attached to the skull. Long-term complications are likely.
Levels Of Severity Of TBIs And Their Effects
While any injury to the brain should be taken seriously, effects vary by levels of injury severity, namely:
- Mild: Do not let the classification of “mild” fool you into thinking that it is not serious. A mild TBI is a concussion with symptoms that typically last for 15 minutes or less. Mild means that there are general symptoms to look for: the feeling of being dazed or confused or a very brief loss of consciousness. Headaches, nausea and vomiting shortly after the impact are not uncommon. In cases of mild TBIs, the injury does not necessarily show up on a scan.
- Moderate: Moderate means that the person had a longer span of unconsciousness, lasting minutes to hours. People who have a moderate TBI can be confused for days or weeks and have marked changes in behavior, memory and sleep patterns. Fatigue, headache, ringing in the ears, nausea and vomiting are common. Because the brain has been injured, a moderate TBI can affect movement and vision as well. A moderate TBI will usually, but not always, show up on a scan.
- Severe: Severe TBIs are life-threatening and require immediate medical attention. These injuries can cause permanent loss of cognition, emotional disturbances and difficulty with decision-making, language, reading and writing. Depending on the cause and the areas affected, people who suffer a severe TBI can also have chronic pain, paralysis, difficulty speaking, and vision or hearing loss. These can be permanent.
TBIs are unfortunately more common than most of us think. We can suffer from brain trauma after falling down or being struck – even lightly – by a vehicle while we are walking or biking.
What To Do After An Injury
The most important action to take is to be seen by a doctor right away. A parent, spouse or another loved one should monitor you for at least 24 hours. They should keep track of and write down any changes that are noticed. If you were in an accident or hurt while engaged in construction activities, be sure to have someone get the names and contact information of any witnesses. Also, make sure to get copies of the police and EMS reports. Keep all medical records and notes about the diagnosis and conversations you had with the doctor.
Get The Experienced Legal Guidance You Need After An Injury
At The Stuckey Firm, LLC, we provide the experience you need to get the results you deserve. Work one-on-one with a skilled personal injury attorney to ensure that you are not taken advantage of by the insurance company and that maximum compensation is pursued. Call 937-471-3837 or send us an email. Your phone call, email or visit to our office is always free of charge.