As the control center for the entire human body, the brain is the epicenter of life. Unfortunately, with the active lifestyles and hectic pace of modern society, the brain is too often subjected to harmful situations that may lead to traumatic brain injury (TBI). In most cases, symptoms are temporary challenges, but in some more serious TBI cases, affected individuals may face long-term complications or even death.
Nearly all traumatic brain injuries are caused by a sudden jolt to the head which causes the brain to slam against the inside of the skull. In a few cases, an object penetrating the skull can also result in TBI. Depending on the severity of the jolt, an individual may experience a mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI), also known as a concussion, or a more severe TBI from activities such as:
- Car crashes
- Slips, trips and falls
- Sports injuries
- Workplace accidents
- Domestic violence
- Gunshot wounds
Following one of these injury-inducing situations, symptoms may or may not manifest immediately. In fact, a person may appear to be completely normal and assumed to be healthy. Yet, in truth, severe damage has occurred, eventually leading to symptoms that may include confusion, vision changes, hearing loss, headaches, exhaustion and even personality changes.
Responding to Brain Injury
With most cases of MTBI, symptoms are treated with medication, therapy and/or counseling and often resolve within weeks of the initial injury. However, in more serious cases, the brain may be so damaged that symptoms are more pronounced and longer lasting. In the worst of cases, a person’s state of awareness and responsiveness may be affected long term or permanently. Studies indicate serious TBI may also lead to seizures, nerve damage and degenerative brain diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and dementia.
After an accident or injury, it is important to seek evaluation and treatment promptly from medical professionals trained to handle TBI. Those without specific brain injury training may not recognize or correctly diagnose MTBI or more serious cases of TBI and may actually endanger patient recovery.
It may also be helpful to contact an attorney experienced in personal injury, sports injury, workplace injury or medical malpractice. Such a lawyer can protect the legal rights of injured parties, determine fault and work through insurance claims.