Sacramento, CA (Law Firm Newswire) December 9, 2013 - Not many Americans realize how prevalent traumatic brain injury (TBI) is these days. Roughly 1.4 million sustain such an injury each year.
“Of the 1.4 million individuals who sustain a TBI, three out of four are classified as minor TBI (mTBI), a category many people have never heard of before. A mTBI typically induces a temporary change in the way a person’s brain functions, such as perceptual or behavioural difficulties, mental confusion and/or an altered level of consciousness,” explained Sacramento traumatic brain injury lawyer Deborah Barron of the Barron Law Corporation.
The most common causes of mTBI, according to the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (JAAOS), are vehicle accidents and falls. Companions to the injuries sustained in those situations are joint, bone and musculoskeletal injuries. The interesting link between bone, joint and other musculoskeletal injuries and head trauma is the fact that approximately 50 percent of those with orthopaedic injuries have also sustained head injuries, resulting in a mTBI.
Roughly 80 percent of mTBI injury patients are usually discharged from hospital and expected to return to their original baseline mental condition prior to their accident. “However, this type of injury is often not diagnosed, until the patient tries to return to their normal life. Even with a CT scan, the results are often not conclusive or show nothing,” Barron added. It appears mTBI is a silent epidemic; one that is recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control.
Recent studies of this phenomenon show individuals who sustained multiple traumas and mTBI, are roughly twice as likely as those with ‘only’ multiple body trauma to suffer from cognitive issues, anxiety, depression and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And, victims with lower body injuries and mTBI, are three times more likely to face behavioural and mental/cognitive issues a year after their initial accident than those who only suffered lower body trauma.
“Patients whose symptoms persist for more than three months are diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome (PCS) and it directly affects their whole way of life, from social to emotional and financial struggles,” Barron outlined. Should a patient with PCS sustain a second head trauma, or second-impact syndrome, the results can be catastrophic and include rapid swelling of the brain and substantial deterioration of the functioning of the spinal cord, nerves and other body functions.
Despite the fact that mTBI is considered to be a silent injury, it is the very real result of head trauma acquired from a fall or accident. If that accident was the result of another’s negligence, the victim has a right to claim compensation for their medical bills and other losses, by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
“Never sign off on a personal injury accident with an insurance company until you have spoken to an experienced injury lawyer. They will tell you that if you did sustain head injuries, you may not be diagnosed until later. If you give up your rights too early, you may lose the compensation you deserve,” said Barron.
Barron Law Corporation
1387 Garden Hwy, Suite 100
Sacramento, CA 95833
Toll Free: 800-LAW 5908
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San Francisco, CA 94133
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