Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is among the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), TBI contributes to the deaths of over 50,000 individuals each year, and more than 80,000 individuals experience the onset of a TBI-related disability. Nearly three million emergency room visits each year are also attributable to TBI, and a TBI diagnosis is present in almost 300,000 hospitalizations.
Traumatic brain injury is caused by a sudden blow, bump, or jolt to the head that causes a disruption to the brain’s functionality. TBI can also be caused by an object that penetrates the skull, such as a knife or a bullet. Of course, not all individuals who are struck in the head end up with TBI, but as the statistics from the CDC show, this condition is far more common than most people realize.
TBI is a unique condition in that it manifests itself differently in each individual case. The condition ranges in severity from the mild to severe. The mildest forms of traumatic brain injury are commonly known as concussions. These can last from a few hours to a few days or longer, but usually no more than a week or two. On the other end of the spectrum, the more severe forms of TBI can last for several years or even become permanent.
Individuals who suffer from TBI typically experience a wide range of symptoms, some of the most common include:
- Severe headaches;
- Dizziness and loss of balance;
- Difficulty with focus and concentration;
- Problems with memory;
- Slurred speech;
- Nausea and vomiting;
- Tiredness and fatigue;
- Irritation and agitation;
- Anxiety and depression;
- Rapid mood changes or mood swings;
- Risky and impulsive behavior;
Most Common Causes of TBI
Traumatic brain injuries can happen to anyone, and there are numerous ways this condition can develop. The CDC lists several of the leading causes of TBI:
Falling is by far the leading cause of TBI, accounting for nearly half of all cases in the U.S. Slips, trips, and falls happen all the time and in a number of settings. In many cases, falls are minor and result in small scrapes and cuts, or no injuries at all. There are some cases, however, when falls can result in serious injuries, and when someone falls head-first and/or slams their head hard against the ground, this can result in some form of TBI.
It is important to note that elderly individuals are particularly susceptible to traumatic brain injuries due to falling. According to the CDC, falls are to blame for more than four out of every five TBI-related emergency room visits among adults over the age of 65.
Struck by/Struck Against Events
The second leading cause of TBI is being struck by or struck against a hard object (e.g., wall, beam, loose object, etc.). This type of event accounts for approximately 17% of all TBI-related emergency room visits, and it is especially common on construction sites and other workplaces where heavy machinery and equipment is regularly used.
The third leading cause of traumatic brain injury in the U.S. is motor vehicle collisions and accidents that involve a vehicle and a motorcycle, bicycle, or pedestrian. A high impact collision can cause those involved to be struck in the head, often resulting in serious head trauma. Many times, it may take several hours or even a few days or longer for the symptoms of TBI to show up after an auto accident.
Violence is to blame for approximately 11% of all TBI cases, making it the fourth leading cause of this condition. This could mean fist fights in a bar, domestic violence, gunshot wounds, intentional self-harm, and related incidents. Infants and toddlers up to the age of four often end up with TBI after being shaken back and forth by someone in the household. This is commonly known as “shaken baby syndrome”.
There are a number of other potential causes of traumatic brain injury. These may include head injuries from high impact sports (such as football and boxing), extreme sports (such as skydiving and cliff diving), explosions, combat wounds, and many others.
Suffering from Traumatic Brain Injury in Connecticut? Call the Apex Law Firm to Discuss your Legal Options
In some cases, TBI is caused by an unforeseeable event. In many other instances, however, it results from the negligence or reckless actions of another party. When another person or party’s actions are to blame for TBI, those who suffer from this condition have a right to be compensated.
At the Apex Law Firm, we understand that traumatic brain injuries can take a major physical, emotional, and financial toll on victims and their families, and we fight hard to secure the full and fair compensation our clients need and deserve. For a free consultation with one of our experienced Connecticut personal injury attorneys, call our office today at (860) 900-0900. You may also message us through our online contact form or stop by our Hartford County office in person at your convenience.