What are the different severities of traumatic brain injury (TBI)?
If you have been involved in an accident that caused an injury to your head, you may have suffered from a traumatic brain injury or a TBI. A TBI can occur when there’s a sudden, external assault that damages the brain.
Traumatic brain injuries can vary in their severity, from a mild concussion to a severe injury that can result in a coma or even death. Since there is such a wide range in severity in TBIs, they are categorized into different types and severities. It is important to be familiar with these terms as they will be used extensively by doctors, lawyers, and insurance adjusters who may be handling your case.
When you have suffered any sort of head injury during an accident, your first steps should always be to seek immediate care and a thorough diagnosis. Then, reach out to Tampa brain injury lawyers who can help you seek the maximum amount of compensation for all of your losses, past, and future.
Severity of Traumatic Brain Injuries
The severity of TBIs can usually be sorted into three different levelsL mild, moderate, and severe.
A brain injury may be considered mild if there is little to no loss of consciousness. Often, mild brain injuries may not appear on brain imaging scans. Doctors may rely on symptoms, such as confusion or disorientation, to diagnose an issue. Since these injuries may not appear on scans, doctors will also frequently use neuropsychological testing to determine if there’s been an injury.
A moderate injury is one that results in loss of consciousness that spans over a few hours and confusion that may last for weeks. Much of the time, if a person has received a moderate brain injury, it is likely that the person may have complications that persist for months. They may require treatment from rehabilitation centers.
A severe injury is generally caused by crushing blows or a penetrating injury. If a person has a severe TBI, it is unlikely that they will be able to return to the life they once had. Though not exclusively, most severe TBIs occur as a result of an open head injury.
Different Types of TBIs
Traumatic brain injuries are typically sorted into four different types. The categories are concussion, contusions, anoxic brain injury, and penetrating brain injury.
A concussion is typically considered a mild brain injury that can be caused by shaking, a sudden impact, or a sudden change in movement. Generally, concussions can’t be seen through imaging tests and are usually diagnosed by a doctor doing neuropsychological tests. Though they are considered mild, they should still be taken seriously and treated that way. Concussions can cause a range of symptoms, including headaches, issues with concentration, memory loss, and disorientation.
If you have suffered from a concussion, it is important to become extremely vigilant and ensure that you do not receive another while you are still healing from the first. Getting another concussion on top of the first puts you at a greater risk for a potentially minor head injury to become much more severe.
Just as you can get bruises on your skin, you can also suffer a bruise to your brain. They are caused by the same things, which is blood vessels breaking and leaking. It is the blood leaking under our skin that causes the dark discoloration on a bruise. With brain contusions, the blood can still leak from the vessels, but the major concern is how that leak can contribute to swelling and pressure buildup in your skull.
Brain contusions are often caused by an impact to the head. There are a variety of circumstances where this can happen, such as a car accident that causes your head to hit the steering wheel, a slip-and-fall accident where your head hits the ground, or a sports injury that involves any significant impact to the head or brain.
These impacts can cause damage in several ways. The brain may become bruised at the site of the impact, but it may also become bruised when the impact causes your brain to hit the opposite side of your skull. It is possible to have one or both of these outcomes occur from a significant head injury.
Much like concussions, contusions can vary in severity from minor to extremely severe. When contusions are severe, they can cause symptoms such as disorientation, loss of consciousness, or fatigue, for example. Very severe contusions can lead to brain swelling, which can lead to other serious consequences.
Penetrating Brain Injuries
A penetrating injury occurs when an object pierces through the skull. When this happens, whatever has penetrated the skull (be it an object, skin, skull fragments, or hair, for example) touches the brain. The contact and the force which caused it to happen can have a significant impact on the brain, which can stay local to just one place in the brain or spread to larger sections. These injuries are most common as a result of a car accident, a gunshot wound, a slip, and fall accident, or a sports-related accident.
Anoxic Brain Injuries
These brain injuries occur as a result of the brain not receiving enough oxygen to function properly. After just four or five minutes without adequate oxygen, brain cells can begin to die and cause a brain injury. Medical occurrences, like stroke, blood clots, or heart attack, can cause this to happen. Accidents, such as drowning or choking, can also cause this type of brain injury to occur.
Contact an Experienced Brain Injury Attorney in Tampa
If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident that has caused any type of brain injury, even one that you may consider being mild, it is possible that you will have to endure lasting effects. If you’ve been involved in an accident, you deserve to have someone fighting to get you the help that you need. At Darrigo & Diaz, our attorneys have over 20 years of experience fighting for clients to ensure that they receive the help they deserve.
The Tampa injury attorneys at Darrigo & Diaz will fight for you after your accident. We have years of experience in dealing with insurance companies and will work to make sure that you have the best chance at receiving the compensation you deserve.
To schedule your complimentary consultation, call us at (813) 774-3341 or contact us online. When you schedule an appointment, one of our experienced lawyers will meet with you, either virtually or in person, and will give you individualized advice about how to best proceed to maximize the chances of recovering your losses and obtaining the optimal outcome.