Personal Injury & Medical Malpractice Blog

Monday, June 26, 2017

Understanding Traumatic Brain Injuries

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is an injury to the brain that occurs from a blow to the head or due to an object penetrating the brain. These injuries are among the most complex types of injuries. Depending on the part of the brain that is injured, the type of damage done, and the severity of the injury, the effects may vary widely. They may include lifelong problems with mood, memory, concentration, motor function, or even basic life functions like blinking and breathing. In the most severe cases, TBIs result in death.

How Common Are Traumatic Brain Injuries?

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2013, 2.5 million people nationwide visited emergency rooms for treatment of a concussion or other traumatic brain injury.  Another 282,000 people were admitted to a hospital for treatment of a moderate or severe TBI, and TBI contributed to the deaths of 50,000 people. The CDC estimates that about 30 percent of all fatal injuries involve a traumatic brain injury.

What Causes Traumatic Brain Injuries?

TBIs can be caused by a number of events. Some of the most common causes of these devastating injuries in the United States include:

  • Falls. Falls are the top cause of TBI in the United States, according to the CDC, accounting for 47 percent of all TBI-related emergency room visits in 2013. Older adults are at particular risk of a serious traumatic brain injury from a fall, as are toddlers.

  • Striking or being struck by an object. Sports accidents, workplace accidents, and similar incidents that resulted in hitting or being hit by an object was the second most common cause of traumatic brain injuries in 2013, according to the CDC. These events accounted for 15 percent of all TBI patients seen in hospital emergency departments.

  • Motor vehicle accidents. Car accidents were the third leading cause of TBI in 2013, according to CDC data, resulting in 14 percent of all TBIs overall and 19 percent of TBIs that proved fatal.

  • Medical negligence. While not listed among the top causes of TBI by the CDC, medical errors and medical negligence can cause traumatic brain injuries in a number of ways. Medication overdose, failure to diagnose and treat brain conditions, surgical errors, and birth errors can all result in damage to the brain

Symptoms of a traumatic brain injury can manifest in different ways, based on the severity of the wound and the part of the brain that is affected. Even a mild TBI can cause lingering problems with attention, mood, and memory, as well as motor difficulties like clumsiness or difficulty holding onto objects. A more severe traumatic brain injury may cause more severe motor impairments, amnesia, and significant cognitive problems. Severe symptoms like coma, loss of autonomic functions like breathing, or even death can result from the most severe TBIs.

If you’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury due to someone else’s negligence, don’t wait.

Talk to New York personal injury lawyer Arthur O. Tisi now at 1-917-789-1390 for a FREE consultation to help you understand your legal rights and seek compensation for your injuries.

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