Concussion and Traumatic Brain Injury

Personal Injury Lawyer

The terms mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI) and concussion are used to describe changes in brain function following trauma. The trauma may be caused by a violent blow or jolt to the head or body. Even though concussions are not usually life threatening, they can result in serious, wide-ranging and long term physical and psychological symptoms.

Signs of a concussion or mild TBI include:

  • Headaches
  • Fatigue
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Irritability
  • Impaired cognitive function

Some symptoms may appear right away, and others may not surface until days or weeks later. The degree of damage depends upon the nature of the injury, the force of impact and other factors. Common causes of concussions or mild TBI include falls, and collisions involving cars, trucks, motorcycles and bicycles with pedestrians.

The Mayo Clinic found that four groups in the population have the highest risk of traumatic brain injuries.

  • Children, especially newborns to 4-year-olds
  • Young adults, especially those between ages 15 to 24
  • Adults ages 60 and older
  • Males in any age group

A new study investigated the long-term impact of a single concussion on cognitive function. The study concluded that in contrast to the belief that symptoms generally clear up in three months, about half of the individuals with a single mTBI had long term cognitive impairment.

The more serious the brain injury is, the more dramatic the symptoms may be. Categories of symptoms include:

  • Cognitive problems, may include difficulty with memory, learning, reasoning, judgment, attention or concentration
  • Executive functioning problems, may include problem-solving, multitasking, organization, planning, decision making, or beginning and completing tasks
  • Communication problems, may include difficulty speaking or writing, or understanding speech or writing, inability to organize thoughts and ideas, or trouble following and participating in conversations
  • Social problems, may include trouble taking turns in conversations, problems with changes in tone, pitch or emphasis  to express emotions or subtle differences in meaning, difficulty understanding non-verbal signals, or trouble starting or stopping conversations
  • Behavioral changes, may include difficulty with self-control, lack of awareness of abilities, risky behavior, difficulty in social situations, verbal or physical outbursts
  • Emotional changes, may include, depression, anxiety, mood swings, irritability, lack of empathy for others, anger, or insomnia
  • Sensory problems, may include ringing in the ears, difficulty recognizing objects, impaired hand-eye coordination, blind spots or double vision, a bitter taste, a bad smell or difficulty smelling, skin tingling, pain or itching, or trouble with balance or dizziness.

Post-concussion symptoms can last for days, weeks, months after the event that caused the concussion. An experienced personal injury lawyer Phoenix, Arizona relies on should offer a free consultation and may be able to represent the victim in potential claims for damages.

Thanks to the Law Office of Paul Englander, PLC for their insight into personal injury claims and brain injuries.

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