What are Traumatic Brain Injuries? Traumatic brain injuries, also known as TBIs, are serious forms of head trauma. According to the Mayo Clinic, traumatic brain injury “usually results from a violent blow or jolt to the head or body.” Traumatic brain injuries can also result from “an object that goes through brain tissue, such as a bullet or shattered piece of skull,” as the Mayo Clinic explains. Traumatic brain injuries rain from mild to moderate to severe. Concussions are a type of mild traumatic brain injury. With mild traumatic brain injuries, brain cells are usually affected only temporarily. However, a history of multiple mild TBIs can have long-term consequences including the possibility of chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) and other degenerative diseases. When brain injuries are moderate or severe, changes to the brain can occur that may be permanent. With severe TBIs, there is a high risk of death from head trauma.
Nobody expects to suffer an injury in a car accident or other type of traffic crash in or around Hamilton, Ohio. However, traffic accidents happen more often than you might think. According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, there were 1,244 fatal crashes in 2021. Beyond fatal accidents, there were thousands more collisions resulting in nonfatal injuries. In many of these accidents, vehicle occupants as well as motorcyclists and bicyclists suffered head trauma. Motor vehicle collisions in Ohio can be disorienting and painful, and head injuries need to be taken extremely seriously so that they are treated properly and the injury victim has the best chance of healing fully.
Traumatic brain injuries are among the most common and serious types of injury incurred in road accidents. These types of injuries vary in terms of severity, but they almost always require medical attention. You need to look out for traumatic brain injuries after a vehicle collision. When traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are minor, they may not produce immediate signs or symptoms. More serious TBIs can require emergency treatment and may be fatal.
What are the different types of brain injuries that a person can experience in a serious crash? As Johns Hopkins Medicine explains, TBIs are marked by “a sudden, external, physical assault [that] damages the brain.” Further, traumatic brain injuries are “one of the most common causes of disability and death in adults.” It is important to understand that the term “traumatic brain injury” is an umbrella term that can refer to a wide variety of head traumas. In some types of TBIs, the injury is localized in one specific part of the brain, while other types of TBIs can cause harm across the brain. Johns Hopkins Medicine explains that TBIs typically fall into one of two categories:
Vehicle Collisions can result in both closed brain injuries and penetrating brain injuries. Within both of these categories, brain injuries can be mild, moderate, or severe. Additional terms that you may encounter while you are on the lookout for traumatic brain injuries after a vehicle collision include but are not limited to the following:
Motor vehicle collisions can cause both open and closed brain injuries. Closed traumatic brain injuries in car accidents often result from a person’s head being jolted back and forth due to the force of the collision. With an open traumatic brain injury, a piece of the motor vehicle, such as glass from the windshield, might pierce a person’s skull.
According to a paper-reviewed article in Traffic Injury Prevention, traumatic brain injuries in motor vehicle collisions account for nearly 219,00 emergency department visits, nearly 57,000 hospitalizations, and more than 16,000 fatalities every year on average. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that traffic crashes are a leading cause of serious and deadly traumatic brain injuries each year.
What are the Common Types of Car Accidents Causing Traumatic Brain Injuries?
Many different types of car accidents can result in traumatic brain injuries, including seemingly minor crashes. You should be on the lookout for a traumatic brain injury after a vehicle collision of any of the following types:
Even if you feel relatively healthy after a car accident, you should seek medical attention. Some signs and symptoms of TBIs, especially when a person suffers a concussion, may not appear immediately.
Common symptoms of traumatic brain injuries after motor vehicle accidents will vary depending upon the type and severity of the TBI. In general, however, you should pay attention to any of the following signs or symptoms that may indicate a brain injury:
The Cleveland Clinic emphasizes that infants and children can experience slightly different signs and symptoms, which may include issues with eating or inconsolable crying.
Traumatic brain injury in an auto accident can have various consequences depending upon the severity of the brain injury and whether it is an open or closed brain injury. Mild brain injuries, or concussions, typically have symptoms that subside with treatment and care. However, as we noted above, multiple concussions over a lifetime are more likely to have long-term consequences, such as CTE or other degenerative conditions. Moderate and severe TBIs are more likely to cause permanent disability. Even a mild TBI can require rehabilitation and care from a physician.
Johns Hopkins Medicine identifies various types of deficits that can result from traumatic brain injuries, which include:
If you sustained a traumatic brain injury in a motor vehicle collision, you may be able to file a claim for financial compensation. The first step toward seeking compensation usually involves filing an auto insurance claim to seek money to cover your medical bills, lost wages, and related losses. When traumatic brain injuries are moderate or severe, the injured person may require more damages than the insurance company can pay according to the policy limits. If you cannot obtain full compensation through an auto insurance claim, you may be able to file a lawsuit. Civil lawsuits for traumatic brain injuries in car crashes are common.
When you file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver, you may be eligible for various types of damages, including but not limited to compensation for:
In order to be eligible to receive those types of compensation in a car accident lawsuit based on a traumatic brain injury, you must file your claim quickly. Under Ohio law, plaintiffs usually have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. Once that two-year statute of limitations runs out, your claim will become time-barred. To avoid ending up with a time-barred claim, you should note the date of the accident. Your claim must be filed within two years from that date.
Traffic crashes in the Hamilton, Ohio area can range widely in terms of type and severity. If you were involved in an accident, regardless of how minor or major the wreck might seem, it is critical to look out for traumatic brain injuries after a vehicle collision. Sometimes traumatic brain injuries do not produce immediate signs and symptoms. Indeed, in some situations, signs of a concussion will not appear for hours or even days. To ensure that you have a traumatic brain injury treated, you should seek a medical assessment immediately. Even if you do not instantly have signs of a TBI, it is important to have a doctor evaluate you for harm.
When traumatic brain injuries do occur in collisions, you may be able to file a claim for compensation. In collisions caused by negligent motorists, injury victims often can seek damages to cover a variety of losses. Our Hamilton motor vehicle accident lawyers can help you to seek compensation for direct and indirect losses.