Brain injury cases are not like your typical injury or accident case. In many cases, a person will have a broken bone. A broken bone is easy to see and can be easy to treat. You can see a broken bone on an x-ray and when it’s healed, it is easily visible as well. In other words, a broken bone is hard to miss.
A brain injury is almost the complete opposite of a broken bone.
A brain injury can be very obvious. For example, a subdural hematoma, which is bleeding in the brain that doctors can see with a CT scan. But thousands of brain injuries occur every year and they are diagnosed late or they are never diagnosed at all.
See, the brain is actually a very delicate organ. Violent movement of the head can cause the brain to move back and forth inside the skull and strike the inside of the skull.
This is called a concussion.
Even if you don’t have a cracked skull or bleeding in the brain, you can have a traumatic brain injury or concussion. This injury is so serious that it can kill you, or change your personality, your mood and your behavior interrelationships with your friends and family.
Brain injuries can be temporary or permanent and they can destroy your life. Traumatic brain injuries can cause depression and anxiety and all sorts of social and emotional disorders.
But there is no test that doctors can do similar to an x-ray for a broken bone for a more subtle brain injury. Because it is not easy to diagnose, doctors miss the diagnosis.
Oftentimes, it is up to the injured person and his family to come forward and admit that the injured person’s behavior has become very strange or not typical for that person.
Some of the symptoms of a traumatic brain injury are:
Change in personality
Change in mood
Change in food or hobby preference
Change in behavior
What You Need to Know
Traumatic injury to the head can damage the delicate tissues of the brain. Even if the full damage is not visible, brain injuries are often serious and life altering. The symptoms of brain damage vary widely, depending upon the type and extent of the injury.
The most common causes of traumatic head injuries are motor vehicle accidents, falls and firearms. Even relatively modest blows to the head can cause a brain injury. As mentioned, a brain injury can be obvious.
However, the injury is often subtle and can’t be diagnosed by doctors who cannot diagnose the subtle personality change that accompanies this kind of injury. Only a family member or loved one can do that.
That is why it is key to get your loved one to a doctor or neurologist and explain the changes which have happened after the trauma. They need your input to make a diagnosis and see what kind of treatment is available. Documenting the injury is very important.
Because brain injuries can be so subtle in their effect, it can be hard for to tell if you are behaving a bit differently or whether your family member is seriously struggling with things that used to be simple, or if they have had a real change in personality or mood. Watch them carefully.
Another thing to keep in mind: if you are seeing the ‘wrong’ kind of doctor, they might ‘pooh-pooh’ your claims of there being serious fallout from the trauma.
They may deny that anything is going on and encourage you to ignore it.
Chicago brain injury attorneys who know what they are doing always give their clients good advice: see a doctor who takes your complaints seriously.
Cases like these have to be documented and it isn’t enough just to go get a second opinion. If your doctor is not addressing the needs of the patient or seems skeptical or outright hostile, then it is time to change doctors. You deserve a good doctor, plain and simple.
Two Categories of Brain Injury
Often, traumatic brain injuries are classified into two categories: penetrating head injury and closed head injury.
1. A penetrating head injury, or open wound, is visible and involves an actual penetration of the skull and brain tissue.
2. A closed head injury is the more common type of traumatic brain injury. These vary widely in severity. For example, a minor concussion is a form of closed head injury.
On the other end of the spectrum, a closed head injury can result in complete disability, loss of physical function and cognitive ability, or even death.
Symptoms of Brain Injury
Sometimes, the symptoms of a profound head injury are not immediately apparent. However, there are recognized symptoms of brain damage. Signs of closed head injury include unconsciousness at the accident site, a coma, or seizure(s).
If an individual sustains an injury to the head, it is important to seek immediate medical attention. An injured person in a car accident may not remember sticking their head during the accident and the adrenaline during the accident dulls the pain.
But a severe headache which comes on later that day or over the next several days can definitely be related to a traumatic brain injury.
A person can suffer a ‘coup-contrecoup’ traumatic brain injury simply from a rapid moving of the head back and forth. This can be a result of a ‘whiplash from a car accident or from a fall, or some sort of blow to the head.
Even if a CT scan does not show a subdural hematoma (bleeding on the brain), a person can still have sustained a brain injury. Doctors and other brain injury specialists do not rely only on objective testing such as CT scans or brain MRI’s to diagnose concussion or brain injury.
Signs of such injuries include sleep disruption, headache, personality change, sudden weight gain or loss, among many others.
If you suspect a brain injury to yourself or a loved one, then you should definitely let your doctor know so he or she can refer you to the appropriate medical professional for screening.
A brain injury is very serious, and you should not wait to address it if you suspect you might have that problem. If you suspect you or a loved one has a brain injury, you should go to a doctor immediately. There may be treatment that will help the injury.
Documenting the injury and the problems are the only ways that we will ever be able to make a claim for it in a claim or lawsuit. Proving the brain injury claim requires the help of a lawyer who will take the time to get to know you and your family and is familiar with handling these sorts of cases.
In a serious and complex injury like this, speaking with an experienced attorney is the best thing you can do to protect yourself and your family.
Thank you for watching this video. I make videos like this to help injured people and answer their questions.
If you or a loved one has been injured and you still have questions, please give me a call. I offer a free no obligation consultation by telephone or in person, where I answer all of your questions.
You can call my toll free number 888-HURT-318 (888-487-8318). Operators are standing by 24/7.
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If you click the link, you can get your copy of my Injury DVD which answers the most common questions people have when they or a loved one has been hurt. If you would like a hard copy/physical copy, I will mail that to you for free.
Providing good information to injured people is the mission of my law office.
If I can be of further assistance, please don’t hesitate to call. Good luck and thank you.
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