Traumatic brain injuries affect 1.4 million people in the United States every year. Falls and motor vehicle crashes are the leading causes of traumatic brain injuries, accounting for approximately 48 percent of cases each year. Among those injured annually, 50,000 die and 235,000 are hospitalized. A traumatic brain injury can cause serious repercussions and can lead to permanent disabilities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that at least 5.3 million people in the United States have a long-term or lifelong need for help to perform daily activities as a result of traumatic brain injuries. A traumatic brain injury is a life altering event that can cause financial problems, emotional distress and severe pain and suffering.

Symptoms of a Brain Injury

By definition, a traumatic brain injury is a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the function of the brain. A traumatic brain injury is also commonly referred to as TBI or head injury. The severity of head injuries can range from mild to severe depending on the extent of damage to the brain. It can result in short or long-term problems for the victim. A person with a mild brain injury may experience headache, lightheadedness, dizziness, blurred vision, confusion, fatigue and behavioral changes. Mild brain injuries may also cause memory problems, a change in sleep patterns and the person may or may not lose consciousness. Symptoms of severe head injuries are similar to mild cases, but might also include the following:

  • Headache that gets worse or won’t go away
  • Vomiting or nausea
  • Convulsions
  • Dilation of one or more pupils
  • Inability to awaken from sleep
  • Slurred speech
  • Weakness in the extremities
  • Loss of coordination
  • Confusion, restlessness or agitation

Treatment of a Brain Injury

It is impossible to reverse damage to the brain, but medical personnel will do everything possible after an accident to prevent further injuries.When a patient is being treated for a head injury, the medical provider will most likely order imaging tests such as an x-ray, CT scan or MRI. Surgery is sometimes required depending on the damage. For moderate to severe cases, rehabilitation is often recommended that involves treatment programs in the areas of physical therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy and counseling.

Compensation for a Brain Injury

If a traumatic brain injury was the result of an auto accident, fall, violent act or other cause where negligence was involved, then the victim may be entitled to compensation.Monetary damages may be awarded for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and mental anguish.If you or a loved one has a traumatic brain injury caused by someone else’s negligence, contact David M. Benenfeld for expert legal advice.