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What you need to know about traumatic brain injury
Many people have heard of traumatic brain injury (TBI) even if they've never directly dealt with it. If a loved one has been recently diagnosed with TBI, or if you believe a loved one may have undiagnosed TBI, read on for an overview of the causes and effects of TBI.
What causes TBI?
TBI, as the name implies, can be caused by any blow or sudden impact that causes injury to the head. For instance, car accidents are one of the most common causes of TBI. A car accident may result in a passenger hitting their head, causing the brain to jolt roughly within the skull. TBI can also result from falls or slips when the person hits their head on the ground or on some other object as they fall.
Sometimes, injuries that appear relatively minor may still result in TBI. On the flipside, some injuries that appear severe may not result in TBI. It's nearly impossible to tell, just from witnessing the injury, if the damage was significant enough to cause TBI. Instead, a medical professional must assess the individual to determine if they have sustained brain damage.
How is TBI diagnosed?
Most often, medical professional use the Glasgow Coma Scale to determine brain function and possible injury. This testing system asks individuals to respond to commands to move body parts. Medical professionals will likely also assess brain function based on the individual's speech coherence, and will request imaging tests if brain injury is suspected.
In addition to this information, which is typically gathered in a medical setting such as a hospital, medical professionals may use information about the injury itself (such as the height of a fall) to guide them in their diagnosis. However, it's important to note that sometimes TBI may go undetected at first, particularly if it is relatively mild. If you believe you or a loved one may have suffered TBI without a diagnosis, there is no harm in returning to a medical professional or getting a second opinion.
What are the effects of TBI?
Because the brain is incredibly complex, TBI can manifest in a wide variety of ways. Individuals may exhibit only one or two of the symptoms, or a large number, each of which may vary from mild to severe.
Common effects and symptoms of TBI include difficulty with memory or concentration, or with following a logical pattern of thought. TBI may also cause difficulty sleeping, or significant change in sleeping patterns, which may worsen concentration and memory problems.
TBI can also cause purely physical symptoms, such as headaches, dizziness, or difficulty in vision. These may be paired with limb numbness and nausea.
Particularly in more severe cases of TBI, individuals may experience changes in behavior, which can be especially distressing both to themselves and their loved ones. This may manifest in rapid mood changes, increased irritability, or notably depressed mood.
No matter the number or severity of you or your loved one's TBI symptoms, keep in mind that there is always help available to you. And, if you feel that your case warrants financial compensation, such as payment for medical bills or treatment, the lawyers at http://pacelawfirm.com/areas-of-practice/personal-injury/brain-injury-lawyers can give you the help you need to get the compensation you deserve.