How Do Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBIs) Range in Severity?
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of George E. McLaughlin with McLaughlin Law Firm.
A traumatic brain injury or “TBI” has the potential to cause significant damages to a person’s life and livelihood. Not only is medical treatment a financial challenge in itself, but continuing therapy and life care expenses can be daunting. The good news is that not every TBI is severe, but even mild TBIs can have a lasting impact. This is why all TBIs should receive proper treatment, regardless of their apparent severity. If you or a loved one have suffered a mild, moderate, or severe TBI, reach out to a TBI attorney as soon as possible to discuss your options for physical and financial recovery.
Many brain injuries are not immediately apparent.
It is important to remember that a TBI may not be immediately apparent. This is why it is important to seek medical care as soon as possible after any potential injury to the head. Mild and moderate TBIs may go unnoticed for days, weeks, and even months after the injury is first sustained. Unfortunately, without timely treatment, these brain injuries can result in worsening and irreversible damage. In many instances, a TBI victim is not aware of their injury until family and friends encourage them to seek treatment after noticing shifts in the person’s mood or behavior.
Traumatic brain injuries can range in severity of injury as follows:
- Mild: Mild TBIs are considered highly treatable, but may still result in lasting damage. This is especially true if the injury goes untreated or someone has suffered more than one TBI of any severity, such as concussions received while playing sports. Symptoms of a mild TBI may include confusion, disorientation, nausea or vomiting, fatigue, difficulty speaking, sleep trouble, loss of balance, blurred vision, sensory problems, mood changes, and even loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes.
- Moderate: Moderate TBIs can result in temporary or lasting impairments regarding physical, emotional, and cognitive functioning. Moderate TBI survivors often seek therapeutic and rehabilitative help to overcome and compensate for these impairments in daily life. Common symptoms of a moderate TBI may include all of those discussed above in losing consciousness at the time of the injury followed by persistent headaches, repeated vomiting or nausea, dilation of one or both pupils, inability to awaken, weakness or numbness in the extremities, confusion, sudden changes in behavior, mood, and personality.
- Severe: Unfortunately, severe TBIs are often associated with long-term or permanent damage. Severe TBI survivors often require ongoing treatment and life care expenses to return to an acceptable quality of daily life. Without immediate medical attention, these injuries can easily be fatal. Severe TBIs can include all of the symptoms discussed in the above categories, in addition to loss of consciousness lasting from minutes to hours, convulsions or seizures, clear fluids draining from the nose or ears, profound confusion and disorientation, persistent and worsening headaches, sudden aggression, changes in behavior, mood, and personality, as well as coma and other consciousness disorders.
It is absolutely imperative to remember that any potential brain injury should be taken seriously, regardless of severity. Leaving any level of brain injury untreated can result in permanent damage to a person’s health, life, and relationships. Even a mild or moderate brain injury can become severe if left untreated, and if someone has suffered multiple brain injuries, the effects could compound.
If you or a loved one have suffered any level of TBI, talk to an attorney.
It is important to note that moderate and severe TBIs often result in the need for long-term care. Especially if the injury occurred due to another party’s negligence, it is important to research all of your options for financial recovery and future financial stability. Reaching out to a TBI attorney is a great way to access existing resources to help you and your family adjust to life after a TBI as well as to evaluate the viability of a personal injury claim to help cover your damages such as medical bills, lost wages, and more.