How Does a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Occur?
One of the worst injuries you can sustain in an accident is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). These injuries are often some of the most devastating. After all, your brain is arguably one of (if not the) most essential organs in your entire body. If something happens to your brain, your whole body will experience the effects.
Often, those who suffer TBIs must deal with the repercussions of the injury for the rest of their life. Even the slightest damage to your brain can cause lasting effects. From motorcycle and car accidents to slip and fall accidents, TBIs can occur for a host of reasons.
Suffering a traumatic brain injury is a significant injury that requires extensive treatment. However, whenever someone else’s recklessness leads to an accident that causes someone to suffer a traumatic brain injury, the at-fault individual can and should be held responsible.
TBIs are life-changing injuries. Those who suffer them are often never the same. They must deal with long-term disabilities because of their injury. If you or someone you loved suffered a traumatic brain injury because of someone else’s negligence, contact AMA Law. An Oklahoma traumatic brain injury attorney will help you receive the justice and compensation you deserve.
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)?
Traumatic brain injury occurs when the brain suffers damage due to a sudden injury. Typically, this injury disrupts the brain’s normal function. Often, a blow, bump, or jolt to the head causes the brain to hit the sides of your skull suddenly and violently, also known as a closed head injury. When an object pierces the skull and damages brain tissue, that is known as a penetrating head injury.
According to the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, roughly 5.3 million Americans live with a TBI-related disability. Each year, there are about 2.8 million new cases of TBI in the United States. 2.5 million of these cases involved emergency room visits, while 288,000 required hospitalizations and 57,000 resulted in deaths.
These injuries can lead to a host of complications, such as memory loss and loss of cognitive function.
Traumatic brain injury symptoms can range from mild to moderate and severe. Some cases may result in a loss of consciousness without any brain damage, while others lead to comas and even death. As you can see, you should always treat these injuries with the highest level of seriousness. Even if you think the injury is minor, seek medical treatment to make sure.
Traumatic brain injury symptoms vary depending on the severity of the injury. However, most cases share many of the same signs, such as:
- Paralysis (temporary or permanent)
- Dilated pupils
- Changes in vision (blurred or distorted vision, seeing double, light sensitivity, temporary blindness, etc.)
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Loss of balance
- Loss of cognitive function
- Ringing in ears
- Loss of consciousness
- Memory loss
- Trouble focusing or thinking clearly
- Changes in mood and behavior
- Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) coming out of the nose or ears
While losing consciousness occurs in many cases of TBI, it does not always happen. If you suspect you or someone you know suffered a TBI, seek medical attention right away. Also, contact a personal injury attorney to learn what your options are.
Even though your brain is so vital to the health and function of your body, it is still quite sensitive. The slightest damage can lead to various symptoms and complications. In many cases, you might lose consciousness after suffering a traumatic brain injury.
Unfortunately, there are many traumatic brain injury causes. Each varies in severity, but they all can lead to devastating results. Some of the most common TBI causes are:
- Slip and fall accidents
- Traffic accidents (passenger vehicle, motorcycle, or commercial truck)
- Construction accidents
- Sports injuries
- Being struck by a flying, falling, or swinging object
- Physical abuse
- Blast injuries due to explosions
- Natural disasters
Many of these accidents can lead to either closed or penetrating TBI. Regardless, you should always seek medical attention after sustaining a blow to the head, even when you feel like you are okay.
Complications of TBI
As with all injuries, there are several complications that can occur after suffering a traumatic brain injury. Some complications can appear immediately after a TBI, while others do not make themselves known until much later. Severe injuries increase your risk of a more severe and potentially life-altering complications.
Some of these complications include:
- Brief Loss of Consciousness: A person loses consciousness for a period before quickly waking up
- Coma: A person loses consciousness, is unaware of their surroundings, and cannot respond to any stimulus. After some time, they may wake up or enter a vegetative state.
- Vegetative State: A person is unaware of their surroundings but might open their eyes, make noises, respond to reflexes, and more. This state can become permanent.
- Minimally Conscious State: A person will experience minimal consciousness with some signs of self-awareness or awareness of their environment. Often a sign of recovery.
- Brain Death: There is no measurable brain activity.
- Fluid Buildup in the Brain
- Infections (either in the brain or spinal cord)
- Blood vessel damage (can lead to a stroke, blood clots, and more)
Contact an Oklahoma Traumatic Brain Injury Attorney
Unfortunately, expenses related to TBI do not stop after a patient seeks medical attention. Often, these injuries lead to long-term complications and rehabilitation that tries to maximize function and independence.
Traumatic brain injury treatment costs billions of dollars in the United States every year. It has far-reaching impacts, from lost wages and future treatment to loss of quality of life. However, if someone else’s negligence results in an accident that causes your TBI, you may be able to seek compensation.
While no amount of money will make up for the damages caused to you and those you love, it will hopefully help cover your expenses and relieve some of the stress that accompanies these injuries.
If you or a loved one suffered a traumatic brain injury, contact an Oklahoma personal injury attorney at AMA Law today.