Brain injury and (3) swelling. Millions of people are treated for brain injury in America, more than most people think. Most often these injuries are because by auto accidents, participation in sports, falling, etc., and they can go from mild to moderate, and in some instances, severe.
When you are driving in a car at about 50 miles an hour; and you are involved in an auto accident that brings your vehicle to an abrupt stop, your brain is still travelling at a velocity of around 50 MPH at impact. The brain is then, slapped back and forth inside the inner walls of your skull, causing a bruising in mild cases or possibly tearing and swelling with more severe impacts. This is similar to the “shaking baby” syndrome that we were hearing so much about, a little while ago.
The brain is made of soft tissue, inside the skull. It is not stationery. The skull is hard and without the ability to expand. If the brain is moved back and forth inside the skull, and is hitting up against the walls of the skull, there is the possibility of it being damaged. Bruising may lead to bleeding, which is a very dangerous situation since the skull has no way of releasing (without medical intervention) the buildup of pressure inside the skull due to the bleeding.
Tearing and Swelling
Bruising of the brain is bad, but tearing of the brain is decidedly much worse. The brain is a network of wiring that controls every aspect of our body functions. If these wires are disconnected by cutting or tearing, the body function controlled by that particular wiring system will cease to work. Similarly, swelling of the brain caused by bruising will cause pressure in areas of the brain that will eventually stop that portion of the brain from functioning.
Concussions Suffered as a Result of Sports Activities
Concussions due to injuries caused to players during sporting events have come under close scrutiny for these exact same reasons. Players, especially football players are suffering concussions at an alarming rate. Such injuries may often go undetected for sometime, or without proper treatment. This can result in serious problems for the injured person at much later dates. (See Related Post)
PTSD and Other Brain Injuries
PTSD has come to the forefront as a result of the wars this country has been involved in both past and present. Percussion injuries also known as “blast injuries” resulting from loud explosions have also being identified as having caused severe brain injuries amongst our active duty and retired military.
If you or one of your loved ones have been involved in an accident, do not assume that just because you can walk away from it, that all is fine. Your brain may have suffered an injury that if treated properly and quickly, may heal without any residual problems.
There may also be help for individuals suffering from traumatic brain injury through the Center for Disease Control. The CDC has information regarding the prevention and control of many types of brain injury. See www.cdc.gov/TraumaticBrainInjury/.
To consult with an experienced attorney on this issue, or if you or a loved one is suffering from a brain injury due to the actions of another individual, contact Levin & Perconti at (312) 332-2872 for a free consultation.