National TBI Awareness Month: Common Causes And Complications
Brain Injury Awareness Month is an event celebrated every March in the US, calling attention to the prevention of concussion, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and associated harm to the most important organ in the human body. The Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA) hosts the celebration every year, pointing out that at least 3.6 million people suffer head trauma annually – at a rate of around 1 victim every 9 seconds. Of these head injuries, 2.6 million are TBI; a total of 5.3 million Americans are currently living with TBI, which can range from a minor medical condition to severe, debilitating disabilities.
TBI is an acquired brain injury, which means it involves harm to the brain that is not hereditary, related to a birth defect, or related to a medical disorder. As such, it is a relief to know that you may have remedies if you or a loved one suffered TBI in an accident. A Miami personal injury lawyer can explain the details, but it is important to understand common causes and long-term effects of TBI.
How TBIs Happen
A TBI is any trauma to the brain caused by a violent impact, blow, or penetrating object. The skull offers powerful protection against these factors, but the brain can sometimes move within the fluids surrounding it. When the brain makes contact with the skull, it can lead to bleeding or contusion. Falls are by far the top cause of TBI, at almost 48 percent of all hospitalizations from head injuries. Unfortunately, these incidents disproportionately impact older adults. Around one-third of all TBI hospitalizations and 28 percent of fatalities involve people 75 years or older.
These injuries may also be the result of:
- Birth injuries, particularly from use of forceps or vacuum extractors during a difficult delivery
- Medical malpractice, including surgical errors
- Car, truck, and motorcycle collisions
- Pedestrian and bicycle accidents
- Assaults, gunshots, and other criminal activity
Long-Term Medical Complications from TBI
The exact nature of these head injuries varies according to the causes, strength of the trauma, and region of the brain that was affected. A victim who suffers a minor concussion may recover quickly without any long-term health effects. However, severe TBIs may cause serious bruising, torn or damaged tissues, bleeding, and other physical harm to the brain. Associated medical conditions include:
- Unconsciousness, coma, or being in a vegetative state
- Brain death, in which there is no measurable activity and removal of life-sustaining medical devices will result in death
- Difficulties with concentration, memory, and sleeping
- Swelling in the brain
- Paralysis to facial muscles
- Vision or hearing loss
- Problems with communication
- Depression, anxiety, and mood swings
There is even some research showing a link between TBI and degenerative brain disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
A Florida Medical Malpractice Attorney Will Protect Your Interests
For more information on your legal options after suffering TBI in an accident, please contact Freidin Brown, P.A. to schedule a free consultation at our offices in Miami or Fort Myers, FL. After we review your circumstances, we can discuss strategies for recovering compensation for your losses.