Understanding the long-term effects of traumatic brain injuries

Auto collisions, and other accidents, may cause people to suffer traumatic brain injuries, which may result in long-term effects and complications.

People in West Virginia, and throughout the U.S., commonly suffer traumatic brain injuries. In 2010, patients were diagnosed with these types of injuries in 2.2 million emergency department visits, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Generally, occurring when people suffer a blow, bump or jolt to their bodies or heads, traumatic brain injuries may be caused by any number of factors. This may includemotor vehicle collisions, falls, assaults, and other types of accidents. Regardless of how they are sustained, these types of injuries may have lasting implications for those who suffer them, and their families.

Common effects of traumatic brain injuries

The effects people experience as a result of traumatic brain injuries can vary based on factors, such as the severity of the injury. Some of these effects develop immediately following, or shortly after, an injury. However, others develop over time and may not manifest until much later.

According to the Mayo Clinic, people may experience both physical and cognitive effects as a result of traumatic brain injuries. This includes loss of consciousness, headaches, convulsions or seizures, nausea and vomiting, loss of coordination, and numbness or weakness in the fingers or toes. Additionally, traumatic brain injuries may cause people to experience confusion, to become agitated or combative, to slur their speech or to fall into comas.

Complications resulting from head trauma

Traumatic brain injuries do not affect everyone in the same way. Some people may recover relatively quickly with rest. Others, however, may experience long-term complications. Some of the most common complications resulting from these types of brain trauma include the following:

  • Blood vessel or nerve damage
  • Altered consciousness or seizures
  • Communication problems
  • Sensory problems
  • Infections
  • Fluid buildup

Additionally, people may also experience behavioral or emotional changes, or intellectual problems, according to the Mayo Clinic. In some cases, traumatic brain injuries may lead to degenerative brain diseases for people down the road.

Coping with the effects of traumatic brain injuries

Depending on the severity of their injuries, the effects and their conditions, some people may need ongoing medical treatment and care as a result of traumatic brain injuries. Furthermore, some people to have to make lifestyle changes as a result of their injuries. This includes altering their regular activities and making home modifications. Sometimes, the effects of traumatic brain injuries may force people to change their job positions, or leave them unable to work altogether.

Seeking legal guidance

People in West Virginia, and elsewhere, who suffer traumatic brain injuries often incur medical expenses, as well as suffer lost wages. When these injuries are caused by the negligence or intentional actions of others, those responsible may be held financially liable. Therefore, those who have suffered traumatic brain injuries may benefit from working with an attorney. A lawyer may help them to understand their rights, and explain their options for pursuing compensation.