When the human brain strikes the inside of the skull, is shaken violently or deprived of oxygen, a non-penetrating traumatic brain injury TBI is likely to occur. The damage from a traumatic brain injury may be temporary of permanent and in varying degrees of severity ranging from mild to catastrophic. Non-penetrating TBI’s are the most prevalent form of brain injury.
While some traumatic brain injuries may be mild, requiring only rest as a treatment, others may be extremely severe, leading to lifelong debilitation, physically, cognitively and emotionally, with many leading to death. The type of traumatic brain injury as well as the level of severity, determines the patients prognosis. Medical personnel typically employ the Glasgow Coma Scale to assess the level of neurological damage. However there is no correlation between the Glasgow Coma score and the time and extent of recovery.
The Different Forms of Non-Penetrating Traumatic Brain Injury
Auto accidents, sports injuries, falls, construction accidents, and many less common scenarios, can result in a TBI. Many of these brain injuries display no external symptoms and go unidentified or neglected. It was once common for an athlete to return to play following an apparent concussion, putting that player at risk for a subsequent concussion that could be fatal. It was standard procedure for boxers to take a standing eight-second count after being knocked down from a blow to the head, and then carry on the fight as long, as long they could count fingers and knew where they were. In sports today, greater precautions and preventative measures are being employed, thanks in part to recent attention to a progressive disease called chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which has been discovered in former football players.
This list explains the most common forms of non-penetrating traumatic brain injuries:
· Concussion – A sudden impact to the head, rapid acceleration of deceleration of the brain within the skull, or violent shaking or the brain can cause a concussion. The level of severity of can be diverse with symptoms lasting a few days, weeks, months or years. A concussion may lead to temporary unconsciousness, nausea and/or vomiting. Anyone who receives a concussion should refrain from any activity that could lead to a second brain injury, which could be fatal.
· Contusion – A contusion is bleeding of the brain often caused by direct impact. Immediate surgery may be required to stop the bleeding and remove the contusion.
· Subdural Hematoma – A hematoma is a hemorrhage usually associated with traumatic brain injury. A subdural hematoma is created when blood gathers between the inner layer of the dura mater and the arachnoid mater. An increase in intracranial pressure may occur which can cause compression and damage to delicate brain tissues. When acute, subdural hematomas are often life threatening.
· Coup – Contrecoup – This type of injury involves a contusion on the side of the brain where impact occurred, followed by an additional contusion directly opposite the impact point. It is the result of a tremendous force that causes the brain to slam against the opposite side of the skull.
· Diffuse Axonal Injury – A rotation of the brain within the skull that tears brain tissues over a diffuse area. Diffuse axonal injuries are often the result of automobile or motorcycle accidents as well as shaken baby syndrome. The damage from this type of injury is often widespread and often permanent or fatal. Surgery is not an option with diffuse axonal injury.
· Second Injury Syndrome – When a brain injury such as a concussion receives a secondary injury before the primary injury has completely healed, second injury syndrome may occur. This type of injury can be fatal in some cases. Although not too common, they are seen in contact sports such as football and boxing where a participant is returned to competition after have his “bell rung.”
· Brain Oxygen Deprivation – Not all brain injuries are caused by physical trauma to the head. Anoxic brain injuries occur when the brain is deprived of oxygen. The resulting damage to the brain from lack of oxygen depends largely on the extent of the oxygen deprivation. Some people recover with no little or no adverse affects while others face lengthy rehabilitation. Anoxic injury can come from drowning, strangulation, choking or sudden cardiac arrest. Injuries to newborns before, during or immediately following birth are often due to oxygen deprivation.
The Price Paid for a Traumatic Bring Injury
Many traumatic brain injuries are preventable by heeding proper safety measures in while driving, in sports and recreational activities, working on construction sites or maintaining public places. If you feel that you or someone you care for received a TBI and there was negligence or malice involved, it is important to speak with an experienced brain injury attorney as soon as possible. The cost of a serious traumatic brain injury can be astronomical over the course of a lifetime, due to loss of occupation, medical bills, special needs and rehabilitation. Vocational retraining may be necessary to perform a new job that pays a fraction of your chosen occupation – if you are able to work at all. Even if your physical symptoms were only temporary, you still suffered emotional trauma and endured much pain and suffering. An experienced brain injury lawyer knows the real price you have paid and will pay in the future. Your lawyer will fight tenaciously to recover the compensation you deserve.
Vititoe Law Group has fought successfully for victims of traumatic brain injuries winning substantial the compensation to which they’re entitled. If you or a loved one was injured, reach out to Vititoe Law Group and speak with an experienced brain injury attorney today.