Factors Influencing the Prognosis of a Traumatic Brain Injury
Neurological damage spans the spectrum from relatively minor to life-threatening. However, among the injuries that an individual might suffer in a traumatic accident, a head injury is one of the worst. Many families feel the impacts of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) every year. According to some statistics that were recently published by Neuro Skills:
- About 7,000 people visit an emergency department every day due to concerns for a TBI. This amounts to nearly 300,000 people per year.
- Close to 800 people are hospitalized daily for a head or brain injury.
- More than 56,000 people die every year (more than 150 every day) due to a TBI.
- The most likely age groups to suffer a TBI are children under the age of 4, teenagers, and the elderly.
- TBIs are far more common in men than in women.
- Suicide attempts (and completions) are often overlooked as a cause of traumatic brain injuries.
These numbers show the breadth and depth of the impact of TBIs. Every day, countless families are affected by a traumatic brain injury. While some individuals may make a complete recovery, many others are not as fortunate.
Predicting the Prognosis of a TBI
In a recent study published in the Journal of International Neuropsychology, researchers sought to identify the factors that influenced someone’s recovery from a TBI. The researchers assessed individuals at the time of the injury, one week after the event, and three months following the accident. The researchers graded the recovery process to find factors that were predictive of this outcome. A total of 137 people were included in the study. Their symptoms, behavior, and cognitive abilities were assessed. Some of the symptoms that the individuals reported included:
- Dizziness or vertigo
- Fatigue or tiredness
- Some difficulties with their vision
- Problems with the memory
Overall, about 75 percent of the people achieved complete resolution of their symptoms; however, this also means that a quarter of the individuals in the study were still experiencing symptoms. Some of the factors that were predictive of continued symptoms include:
- Having had a prior TBI
- Prior neurological or psychiatric disorders or conditions
- Younger age
- Female gender
- Involvement in a motor vehicle accident
The researchers found that those individuals who had suffered a TBI in an auto accident were more likely to have long-term symptoms and complications. For this reason, a comprehensive treatment approach is required.
A Comprehensive Treatment Approach is Required
When an individual suffers a traumatic brain injury, it is crucial to begin the treatment process as quickly as possible. Furthermore, a comprehensive treatment approach that addresses all sides of the injury is important. Some of the key elements of this treatment process include:
- Mental health treatment such as meetings with trained counselors and professionals.
- Management of chronic pain issues with anti-inflammatory medications and opioid medications if necessary.
- Cognitive treatment to preserve mental acuity and memory.
- Physical therapy to help restore any lost motor or sensory function.
- Consultation with neurological professionals to manage sensory problems.
Once family members have an overarching treatment approach in place, it is critical to track the progress. Some individuals may progress more quickly than others.
Watch YouTube Video: Treating Traumatic Brain Injuries. This short video explains the different types of treatment for traumatic brain injuries.
Contacting a Brain Injury Attorney
If a family member or friend has suffered a severe injury to the head in an accident, this can lead to some questions. This can create a stressful situation for which everyone deserves help. Because of this, those who have been involved in a serious accident should meet with a brain injury attorney in San Francisco. Some of the ways that an injury lawyer can be helpful include:
- Assisting families in seeking damages that are related to the traumatic brain injury, its complications, and emotional distress.
- Reviewing the details of the accident to ensure that all factors are considered appropriately.
- Making sure that the blame is assigned appropriately after an accident.
- Shifting a case to trial if required.
Families should never feel obligated to face these tough situations alone. Take a few minutes to speak with an experienced San Francisco brain injury attorney today. You could be deserving of a substantial financial settlement.
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