Motor vehicle accidents are a major impetus behind traumatic brain injury (TBI) related hospital visits. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most emergency room stays, hospitalizations, and deaths that can be attributed to TBIs for people ages 15 to 44 involve car crashes. Roughly 30% of all injury related deaths in the United States result from TBIs. Nearly 2.8 million emergency room (ER) visits, hospitalizations, and deaths in 2013 were TBI-related. Broken down, there were about 2.5 million TBI-related ER visits, almost 300,000 hospitalizations, and more than 50,000 deaths in 2013 alone.
After accidental falls and incidents of personal injury, motor vehicle crashes are the most likely cause of TBI-related ER visits, hospitalizations, and deaths (TBI-ERHDs). There has been a 70% increase in TBI-related ER visits, a 11% increase in hospitalizations, and a 7% increase in deaths from 2001 to 2010. The period between 2006 and 2014 saw an increase of 53% in TBI-ERHDs.
So what exactly is a TBI?
A TBI results from any blow, bump, or jolt to the head that leads to a disruption of normal brain functioning. A TBI can vary in severity from mild to severe. In mild cases, changes in consciousness and mental ability can occur. In severe cases, extended memory loss and changes in consciousness can take place.
How do motor vehicle accidents cause TBIs?
A TBI can result from the skull colliding with a steering wheel or windshield. Open wounds may occur, but are not necessary for a TBI to be diagnosed. The force of an accident can cause the brain to strike against the skull since the impact of a collision moves the body, including the brain, in any given direction. A contusion (bruising of the brain) or hemorrhage (bleeding in the brain) may occur.
What are the effects of a TBI?
TBIs can have both short- and long-term consequences, often involving disability and death. Survivors of TBIs often experience symptoms for a number of days, if not years. The ramifications of TBIs include but are not limited to vision, hearing, memory, or thinking impairments as well as depression and personality changes.
Traumatic brain Injuries can significantly impair one’s quality of life. If you or a loved one are injured in such a way, please call 877-PAYAMLA for a free consultation.