Car Accidents and Brain Injury Awareness MonthMarch 21, 2019
While a serious head injury and TBI after a motor vehicle accident could be obvious, that is not the case with a less severe injury, such as a concussion or whiplash, where symptoms may develop more slowly.
Anyone in a car accident who suffered any sort of head impact should seek immediate medical attention, even if they think they are fine. Car accident victims may not realize their behavior has changed, while it could be apparent to family and friends.
A doctor may perform various diagnostic tests, including CT scans or MRIs, to determine the extent of the brain injury. Prompt attention can make a huge difference in future quality of life.
Traumatic Brain Injury
A TBI occurs when the impact from the trauma causes the brain to hit the skull. This results in brain bruising and swelling, and possibly also intracranial bleeding.
A TBI can be mild to severe, with concussion being the mildest type, referred to as a closed head injury. While many people recover from a concussion within a few weeks, it is still very serious and can cause continuing issues for the victim.
Contusions, or bruises, are far more dangerous when they occur in the brain rather than other parts of the body. A brain contusion may require surgery.
In a motor vehicle accident, penetration of a foreign object through the skull and into the brain is not uncommon. This is called an open head injury. While it presents a more fixed point of injury, it can be equally or more severe.
Unfortunately, serious brain injuries may never heal completely, even after years of rehabilitation. While the victim might improve, they do not return to the fully functioning level they were in before the car accident.
Long Term Brain Injury Issues
Long-term issues that TBI victims may deal with include:
- Lack of coordination
- Intellectual disabilities
- Behavioral issues
- Memory loss
- Loss of sensation
- Vision or speech issues
- Inability to make their own decisions.
TBI Recovery Measurement
Measuring the level of recovery from a TBI is based on the Rancho Los Amigos Scale, which consists of eight levels:
- The first level is non-recovery, where the person remains in a coma.
- The second level is a generalized response, where the individual spends most of their time sleeping.
- Third level involves a localized response, where a person is alert for part of the time.
- In the fourth level, the person is awake and aware, but often agitated and confused. They cannot perform basic tasks independently.
- At the fifth level, there is some return of long-term memory, and the person can follow simple commands.
- At the sixth level, the individual can perform certain tasks independently.
- The seventh level occurs when a person can go through daily routine, although there are still issues with memory and judgement.
- If a person reaches the eighth level, they can function once again as independent adults, but some cognitive and other impairments may be ongoing.
The Brain Injury Association of America has declared March Brain Injury Awareness Month.
Delaware County Car Accident Lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello Assist Clients Suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury
If you or a loved one has suffered any brain injury due to a car accident, you need the services of the experienced Delaware County car accident lawyers at the Law Office of Deborah M. Truscello. Call us today at 610-892-4940 or contact us online for a free consultation. We serve clients throughout Delaware County, Media, and West Chester, Pennsylvania.