Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) occurs when an outside force traumatically injures the brain. It can be classified based on severity, mechanism or other features like the location of the injury. In the U.S., TBI is a leading cause of death for persons under the age of 45. According to the mayo clinic, a traumatic brain injury occurs every fifteen seconds. There are approximately 5 million Americans that currently suffer some form of TBI disability. Also, www.caregiver.org, states that 5.3 million Americans, approximately 2% of the population, currently live with disabilities related to brain injury. It should be noted that the leading causes of a traumatic brain injury are motor vehicle accidents, falls, and sports injuries.
The brain is very complex, perhaps the most complicated object on earth. It controls every action the body makes; however, it is extremely delicate and vulnerable. Scientific research shows us how much force a brain can take before it is permanently damaged is still unclear, but it seems that a brain’s threshold is somewhere between 10-50 g’s. However, there are physical activities where too much force is subjected to the brain. Take the sport of boxing, for example. Approximately 52 g’s of force is subjected to the brain, race car drivers are subjected to 80 g’s and football players as much as 200 g’s.
There are two ways in which the brain receives trauma. Direct force is the first type of brain trauma. This is where the force is directed at the skull and penetrates and fractures the skull. This may cause severe brain injury as destructive shock waves are sent through the brain matter. Direct trauma can occur in a slip and fall accident, a vehicular accident or when a hard object strikes the head. The second type is referred to as indirect trauma. This is especially true when the nerve cells are stretched and damaged. Medical researchers believe that this often happens in the well-known and all too common phenomenon called Shaken Baby Syndrome. This type is clearly shown to cause very significant injury and even death.
Symptoms of brain damage are excessive sleepiness, inattention, difficulty concentrating, impaired memory, faulty judgment, depression, irritability, emotional outbursts, disturbed sleep, diminished libido, difficulty switching between two tasks and slow thinking. Brain injuries not only affect the person’s physical activities but also, it can cause extreme stressors in family and interpersonal relationships. People with signs of traumatic brain injury should be given immediate medical attention and routine examinations. Supervision is greatly needed to prevent further damage. Most severe head-injury patients need surgery to repair hematomas or contusions that have occurred.
About the Editors: Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton is a law firm which focuses on injury and accident law and we have experience handling traumatic brain injury and general head injuries. Check out our case results to see for yourself. Our law firm has offices in Elizabeth City, North Carolina (NC) and Virginia Beach, Virginia (VA). Our attorneys have handled numerous head injury and brain trauma cases. Our lawyers hold licenses in NC, VA, SC, WV, KY and DC. We are ready to talk to you by phone right now—we provide free initial confidential injury case consultations, so call us toll free at 1-800-752-0042. Our injury attorneys also host an extensive injury law video library on Youtube . In addition, our lawyers proudly edit the Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard, as well as the Virginia Beach Injuryboard and Norfolk Injuryboard as a pro bono public information service.