In recent years, there’s been a lot of talk about sports-related traumatic brain injuries and the dangers these types of injuries pose to the athletes-especially those who are young and whose brains are still developing. TBIs can also result from being involved in car, workplace and slip-and-fall accidents.
Consider the following alarming TBI statistics:
- 1.7 million – The number of people in the U.S. who suffer TBIs each year
- 52,000 – The number of people who die each year as a result of a TBI
- 275,000 – The number of people who are hospitalized each year for TBIs
- 1.4 million – The number of people each year who are treated and released for TBIs at emergency departments throughout the U.S.
Leading causes of TBIs
- Falls – Roughly 35 percent of TBIs are suffered in falls. Children under the age of four and adults over 75 are especially at risk of suffering a fall-related TBI.
- Motor vehicle accidents – An estimated 17 percent of TBIs are suffered by car accident victims.
- Struck by / against – About 17 percent of TBIs result when individuals are struck in the head with or hits their head against an object.
Symptoms of TBIs
Depending on the severity of a TBI, symptoms can vary significantly. For example, an individual who suffers a minor concussion may feel dizzy and nauseous for a day or two whereas an individual with a severe head trauma may be in a coma and suffer significant brain damage and loss of functioning. In some cases, two individuals who suffer seemingly identical head injuries may experience very different symptoms.
The following are among the symptoms that may result from a TBI:
- Loss of consciousness
- Trouble sleeping
- Blurred vision
- Changes in taste and smell
- Loss of coordination
- Trouble thinking and concentrating
- Slurred speech
In some cases, TBI-sufferers may experience changes in mood and personality. For example, a previously outgoing and talkative individual may become more reclusive and quiet or depressed after an injury. After a TBI, some individuals may also become more impulsive or aggressive. These types of changes can be especially difficult for family members who often feel as though their loved one is a completely different person.
The Costs of a TBI
The monetary costs of a TBI can be significant and may include expenses related to medical bills, lost wages, disability, rehabilitation, therapy, nursing care and various therapists. Additionally, the personal costs of a TBI are often significant and much more difficult to quantify.
In cases where you or a family member suffer a TBI in a car accident in which the at-fault driver was drunk or as the result of a slip-and-fall accident at a restaurant, it’s a good idea to discuss your options with a brain injury attorney in West Virginia. A personal injury attorney will thoroughly review your case and advocate on your behalf to recover the damages and compensation you deserve.