Traumatic brain injuries comes in many different forms. The most severe TBIs often cause immense and permanent physical damage. They are frequently accompanied by other outward signs of injuries–broken bones, muscle tears, cuts, and more.
Less severe TBIs (though not necessarily “mild”) are often harder to diagnose and understand. The symptoms may be more nuanced and those affected frequently show no other major signs of injury. But even these brain injuries can greatly impact one’s life.
The Medical Complexities
In any negligence case arising from an accident where one suffers a TBI, it is important for medical professionals to explain the injuries in detail. As a legal matter, this is often critical in determining the full scope of damages, attempting to understand how the injury will affect one’s life and what resources are necessary to recover. In some cases, parties may contest that a serious injury was suffered at all.
A Med Visuals post from last week offers a helpful primer on some of the complexities affecting less severe TBIs. The report notes that these TBIs are often only identified by those who knew the victim well before the accident and can identify moods, behaviors, personality changes, or other quirks indicating that indicate something is amiss. The harm often does not even show up on MRI or CT scans.
However, just because the injury does not show up on scans does not mean that it is not physically real. For example, the story notes that most less severe TBIs involve “shearing:” town, twisted, or severed axons in the brain. These “axonal” injuries are most common when a head strikes a hard object–like in a car collision–or when one is jostled and the brain slams up against the inside of the skull.
The post includes a helpful video that demonstrates the “shockwave” effect that is common in these incidents. Sudden stops or unexpected acceleration can cause the contact with the force working its way across the brain, causing shearing damage to axons along the way.
In addition to the axons, blood vessels can also be damaged in these situations. Blood damage harm in the brain in not to be taken lightly, as bleeding on the brain can develop into severe, even life-threatening complications.
Major brain bleeding or hemorrhages can be detected as lesions on MRIs or CT scans. And virtually anytime that a there is blood vessel damage there will corresponding damage to nearby axons. However, axons can be damaged even when the blood vessel is intact. In other words, this is how serious axonal damage can be present even when a scan does not show any lesions.
When Carelessness is the Cause – TBI Lawsuits
From car accidents to falls in a nursing home and everything in between, TBIs affect residents in Chicagoland each and every day. If you or a loved one suffers a brain injury of any severity and it was caused in whole or in part by the carelessness of another, you may have legal rights to recover for your losses.
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