What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?
Traumatic brain injury is often misunderstood by the public. To compound the confusion, physicians may describe traumatic brain injury differently. Some doctors describe it as concussion, post concussive syndrome, severe concussion, and in elderly patients, doctors can even refer to a TBI as dementia.
Traumatic brain injury, or TBI, encompasses a range of brain injuries. Loss of memory, amnesia to the traumatic event, severe behavior changes, irritability, loss of speech, motor function, cognitive ability, and consciousness are all potential symptoms of traumatic brain injury.
Medical providers and courts sometimes have trouble diagnosing or understanding a TBI. This is in part because the injury may not be obvious right away, people may not take the rights steps in seeking help, and the different ways people talk about TBI.
Experienced attorneys who routinely handle these types of cases can clarify the issues for the client and the court to best position the client for a favorable result. Hiring an attorney with experience in the handling of a TBI is a crucial step in getting compensation for these types of injuries.
How Does a TBI Happen?
Traumatic brain injuries can happen in any number of ways. Car and truck accidents are some of the most common situations in which people suffer traumatic brain injuries. Accident victims may suffer from traumatic brain injury when the head hits another object like part of the inside of the car or other object.
Construction workers, industrial workers, or bystanders may also suffer from TBI when they are on or near a construction or industrial worksite. Falling construction materials, malfunctioning equipment, or unsafe worksite conditions are all reasons why traumatic brain injuries can happen in a construction site circumstance.
Patients may also suffer from traumatic brain injuries as a result of medical negligence from a medical procedure and infants can suffer head injuries during labor and delivery. Injuries can also occur in a hospital setting or after a medical procedure. A hospital, clinic, or assisted care / nursing environment may be unsafe or not up to industry standards. Dangerous environmental conditions may cause a patient to slip, trip, or fall inside a facility. Improper supervision might allow a patient to wander out of a facility and fall outside, causing a TBI.
Head injuries and a TBI can also occur from trip and falls, falling merchandise in a store, premises-liability accidents, or assaults.
Diffusion Tensor Imaging and Detecting Brain Injury
One of the difficulties of TBI cases has been the ability to combat insurance companies in showing that a brain injury has occurred. Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is a type of technology that can indicate mild brain injuries within days after the injury. DTI measures changes in the white matter of the brain. Studies indicate that these changes may be correlated to changes in cognitive tests.
DTI scans help to indicate the extent of brain injuries much earlier on than before, but they also help to visualize the injury. This means that brain injuries can be detected and monitored in a more controlled, measurable way. This type of evidence can help courts understand whether a plaintiff has suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and if so, determine the extent of the injury.
What You Should Do If You Think You Might Have a TBI
If you know or believe that you or a loved one has suffered from a traumatic brain injury (TBI), immediate action is required.
Seek medical treatment if you at all suspect possible injury, and attempt to get treatment from a clinic that specializes in traumatic brain Injury patients or so called concussion centers. Attorneys who handle TBI case often can refer a patient to the most appropriate center to assist in the proper diagnosis of the head injury.
If caught early, and with the correct treatment, the consequences of a traumatic brain injury could be minimized. In some situations, cognitive and behavioral therapies can help retrain the brain. Unfortunately, many brain injuries result in permanent damage and loss of brain tissue. Make sure that you keep good records of the medical treatment you receive.
After an accident, you should seek counsel from a personal injury attorney who has extensive experience in handling TBI cases. TBI cases can be complicated because of the medical questions that can come up. An experienced attorney will know what kinds of medical documentation, witness statements, expert statements, and other evidence must be collected to build a case.
If you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, contact attorney Tom Robenalt at our Ohio personal injury law firm at (216) 223-7535 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation.