Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are injuries to the brain that occur when sudden force impacts the head.
TBIs are classified as either closed head injuries, or as penetrating head injuries. For example, when a blow to the head transfers force to the brain, thereby causing damage and brain dysfunction but no open wound on the head, it is considered a closed head injury TBI. However, if a foreign object or fragment of skull were to penetrate the brain, it would be considered a penetrating head injury and it too could cause a TBI. Each individual case is unique to the person suffering from the TBI, and there are various degrees of severity. The severity of the trauma determines the extent of the damage and is often categorized as “mild,” “moderate” or “severe.”
Symptoms of Mild TBIs
A mild TBI, such as a concussion, is often characterized by temporary brain dysfunction. The CDC estimates that 75% of the TBIs that occur each year are mild. When an injured person falls and strikes his or her head and remains conscious, or only loses consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes, the TBI is mild. A person with a mild TBI usually exhibits symptoms commonly expected from a sharp blow to the head. There could be a mild headache, or some dizziness, confusion or disorientation. More serious indications of a mild TBI include sudden memory problems, difficulty concentrating, vomiting and/or nausea and problems with loss of balance and difficulty walking.
Symptoms of a Moderate to Severe TBI
Severe TBIs often cause physical damage to the brain’s soft tissue and usually have a long-term impact on cognitive functionality. Severe TBIs can even be fatal. If an injured person loses consciousness for several minutes or longer, it may be a sign that the TBI is moderate or severe in degree. Moderate to severe TBIs exhibit many of the same symptoms as mild TBIs, except the severity of the symptoms is significantly more pronounced, and these TBIs are considerably more dangerous to the health of the injured person. A moderate or severe TBI can cause unusual behavior and serious confusion in the affected individual, as well as present physical manifestations of symptoms such as vomiting, slurred speech and even uncontrollable seizures or convulsions.
Complications Due to TBIs
Brain injury trauma can cause contusions and/or bleeds to occur in the brain, it can cause damage to blood vessels in the brain, and it can even cause skull fractures. Any number of these injuries can further cause blood clots to form in the brain, which can lead to the injured person having a stroke, something that can exacerbate the brain injuries even more.
Contact a Chicago Brain Injury Attorney
Regardless of the degree of the TBI, any injury to the head warrants immediate medical attention and evaluation. If you or someone you love has suffered from a traumatic brain injury, you need to contact an experienced brain injury attorney to help you determine who should be held accountable for your family’s pain and suffering. Please contact Willens Law Offices at (312) 957-4166 for a free consultation.