Using national data from 1995-2001, the Center for Disease Control (CDC), a federal research agency, estimates that 1.4 million people sustain a TBI in the United States each year:
- 1.1 million people are treated and released from hospital emergency departments
- 235,000 people are hospitalized and survive
- 50,000 people die
The leading causes of TBIs are:
- Falls (28%);
- Motor vehicle-traffic crashes (20%);
- Struck by/against events (19%); and
- Assaults (11%).
The signs and symptoms of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be subtle. Symptoms of a TBI may not appear until days or weeks following the injury or may even be missed as people who look fine even though they may act or feel differently. The following are some common signs and symptoms of a TBI:
- Headaches or neck pain that do not go away;
- Difficulty remembering, concentrating, or making decisions;
- Slowness in thinking, speaking, acting, or reading;
- Getting lost or easily confused;
- Feeling tired all of the time, having no energy or motivation;
- Mood changes (feeling sad or angry for no reason);
- Changes in sleep patterns (sleeping a lot more or having a hard time sleeping);
- Light-headedness, dizziness, or loss of balance;
- Urge to vomit (nausea);
- Increased sensitivity to lights, sounds, or distractions; and
- Blurred vision or eyes that tire easily;
The severity of a traumatic brain injury (TBI) may range from “mild” (a brief change in mental status or consciousness) to “severe” (an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia after the injury). An estimated 5.3 million Americans are living today with a TBI-related disability and require help performing daily activities. TBIs can cause a wide range of functional changes affecting thinking, sensation, language, or emotions.
About 75% of TBIs that occur each year are concussions or other forms of mild TBIs.
Repeated mild TBIs occurring over an extended period of time (i.e., months, years) can result in cumulative neurological and cognitive deficits. Repeated mild TBIs occurring within a short period of time (i.e., hours, days, or weeks) can be catastrophic or fatal.
The costs to TBI victims are staggering. There is no way to fully describe the human costs of traumatic brain injury and the burdens borne by those who are injured and their families. Only a few studies of the monetary costs of these injuries are available. According to one study conducted in 2006, direct medical costs and indirect costs such as lost productivity from TBIs totaled an estimated $60 billion in the United States.
In cases involving Traumatic Brain Injury, it is essential that measures be taken promptly to preserve evidence, prove the nature and extent of your injuries, and to enable expert medical witnesses to support the cause of your injuries. If you or a loved one has suffered what you believe may be a traumatic brain injury from an accident, call Bledsoe Law Office now at (276) 523-5462 or CLICK HERE TO SUBMIT A SIMPLE CASE FORM. Don't delay! You may have a valid claim and be entitled to compensation for your injuries, but a lawsuit must be filed before the statute of limitations expires.