One of the activities that many people do every day that is likely to injure them at some point is driving a car. During 2012 alone, 226,544 people were injured in car accidents in the Golden State, according to the California Highway Patrol. Although many people survive collisions with minor injuries, others suffer serious and life-long complications. One of the more serious injuries that a person can suffer is a
traumatic brain injury. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), car accidents are the second leading cause of these injuries across the nation.
Basics of TBIs
As far as car accidents are concerned, traumatic brain injuries (or TBIs) are primarily caused by the speed, weight and size of the vehicles involved. Due to the speed and mass of the vehicle, a collision can cause an occupant’s head to hit the steering wheel, dashboard, window, seat or other object inside the car. When the head hits the object, the force causes the brain to make contact with the inner skull. In cases where the force of the brain’s impact with the skull is significant, a TBI can result.
Once a TBI develops, the symptoms can vary, depending on the degree of injury. Unfortunately, symptoms do not always appear immediately following the injury. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms can take several weeks to present in some cases. In cases of
mild TBI, headaches, dizziness, blurred vision, confusion or difficulty concentrating can present as symptoms. However, if the TBI is more serious, the victim may suffer seizures, nausea, memory problems, personality changes and loss of coordination.
Sadly, 1.7 million Americans suffer a TBI each year, according to the CDC. For each of these victims, the ability to recover from the brain injury depends largely on its severity. In general, those with mild forms of TBI are more likely to recover. However, this can take up to 18 months following the accident with rest and pain medication while under a physician’s care. Even in mild cases, some victims do not make a full recovery and are left with physical and mental impairments that they will suffer for the rest of their lives.
In cases of severe TBIs, the outlook is less promising, as there is currently no effective cure for the injury. Because of this, those with severe TBIs suffer more severe symptoms for much longer than mild TBI victims, often requiring medical assistance for the rest of their lives. In some cases, the TBI can eventually be fatal.
If in an accident, get help
Since the success of treatment for TBI requires early detection, it is important to undergo a medical examination as soon as possible following the accident. Although TBI treatment often involves repeated visits to a healthcare provider or hospitalization, which is expensive, you may be able to recover the cost of your medical bills from the other driver, if negligence on their part contributed to the accident.
The law firm of Winer, Burritt & Scott, LLP has helped many victims of TBIs caused by negligence. Our attorneys can work on your behalf to recover compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering and other losses you suffer as a result of the accident from the responsible party.