Motor Vehicle Accidents and the Lingering Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an injury caused by blunt or penetrating trauma to the head. Motor vehicle accidents cause a significant number of head injuries every year, and they are one of the leading causes of this devastating condition.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a major cause of death and disability in the United States, contributing to about 30% of all injury deaths.” Some of those who survive a TBI can recover completely, while others face residual symptoms that can last from a few weeks to the rest of their lives.
Some of the leading causes of TBI include:
- Blunt trauma (unintentional)
- Motor vehicle accidents
Each of these causes includes a blunt object striking against the skull; however, the skull does not have to be penetrated or fractured in order for it to have suffered an injury. In a car accident, the head does not need to strike anything in order to receive an injury. The force of a sudden stop during the accident can cause the brain to crash up against the hard bone within the skull causing bruising and bleeding in the head. TBI also occurs when the head collides with the windshield or any other stationary object whether or not it results in a penetrating wound.
What are some of the lingering effects of TBI?
Every TBI is different, but some of the common signs of the condition include confusion and amnesia, dizziness, headaches, difficulty concentrating and episodes of vertigo. Sometimes the symptoms are evident right away, but in other cases the symptoms do not arise until days or weeks after the accident.
There are varying levels of severity of traumatic brain injury. With a more mild case, the signs can include depression and the desire to sleep a lot, changes in mood and behavior, and nausea. A more serious TBI might show signs of severe nausea and vomiting, difficulty walking or speaking, seizures, irritability, depression and dilated pupils.
If a person has lost consciousness after an accident for longer than a few minutes, they should undergo a thorough neurological exam or a brain scan to check for bruising or bleeding on the brain.
Find a knowledgeable brain injury attorney to review your case
Because a brain injury can’t be seen, they can be easily overlooked. If new or worsening symptoms emerge later after the case has been settled, the injured party may face challenges in life such as depression, altered personality or aggression, which will have an impact on their health, quality of life and ability to keep a job. Be sure that you choose a knowledgeable attorney who knows how to evaluate how to pursue compensation for these complex cases.
The information contained in this blog post is general information, and should not be treated as legal advice. No attorney/client relationship exists between the reader and Lafferty, Gallagher & Scott, LLC without a signed Attorney Contract Agreement of Representation. Each case is unique and past results should not be treated as a guarantee of the results in your case.