By :Douglas A. Petho
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a serious public health problem. Each year, traumatic brain injuries contribute to a substantial number of deaths and cases of permanent disability. Despite being often overlooked or undiagnosed, on average, approximately 1.7 million people are diagnosed as suffering a traumatic brain injury each year.
What is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
A TBI is caused by a bump, blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain. It can occur as a result of falls, trauma such as automobile accidents or participation in sporting events.
What are the symptoms of a traumatic brain injury?
A person who sustains a brain injury may have both physical and psychological symptoms. The severity of a TBI may range from “mild,” i.e., a brief change in mental status or consciousness to “severe,” i.e., an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia. Sometimes symptoms may appear immediately after the injury but others may not appear until weeks later.
Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries
The symptoms of a mild traumatic brain injury may include:
Loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes No loss of consciousness, but a state of being confused, disoriented or dazed.
Concentration or memory problems Loss of balance or dizziness Headache Mood changes or mood swings Light or sound sensitivity Nausea and /or vomiting Sensory issues such as blurred vision, ringing in the ears or a bad taste in the mouth Anxiety or depression Drowsiness or fatigue Trouble sleeping or sleeping more than usual
Moderate to Severe Traumatic Brain Injuries
Moderate to severe traumatic brain injury may include the same signs and symptoms of a mild injury, but may also include the following symptoms:
Loss of consciousness
Combativeness, extreme irritability or other unusual behavior Slurred speech Profound confusion Inability to awaken from sleep Loss of coordination Numbness or weakness in the extremities Loss of bowel or bladder control Persistent headache or headache that worsens Repeated vomiting or nausea Seizures or convulsions Dilated pupils Clear fluids draining from the nose or ears
Even mild brain injuries can be disruptive to every day life and can last for over a year. A severe brain injury can cause significant impairments and disabilities and can transform the lives of the victim and the victim’s entire family.
We Help People Suffering from Brain Injuries
At Price, Hargett, Petho and Anderson, we have the knowledge and experience to help those who are suffering from the physical, emotional and financial burdens imposed on victims of brain injuries and their families. Since 1979, we’ve been helping fellow North Carolinians recover compensation for the pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, future medical care associated with brain injuries. Call 1-800-737-2160 to discuss your case. As always, consultation is free.