When it comes to traumatic brain injuries, one of the most dangerous aspects is that many people do not realize they have one. While severe injuries are obvious, sometimes damage can be less noticeable and overlooked. Providing education about the different forms of damage is one key to providing better services for traumatic brain injuries.
Types of injuries
Not all TBIs lead to hospitalization and major recovery periods. Less severe impacts can result in more minor injuries, such as concussions that still cause damage to the brain. Here are some other types of TBI that can occur:
- Hematoma: Since there are major blood vessels that run through the head, trauma can cause heavy bleeding. When blood soaks around or into the brain, damage can occur.
- Contusion: A common injury in episodes of shaking, bruising called contusions can cause neurons within the brain to cease communicating. This happens when blood vessels are broken and the brain tissue swells.
- Hypoxia or Anoxia: Hypoxia occurs when the oxygen supply to the brain is decreased and brain cells begin to die. Anoxia occurs when the oxygen is completely cut off.
- Skull fracture: While a skull fracture refers to the cracking of the bones surrounding the brain, injuries to the underlying organs are common. Pieces of the bone can be pushed into the brain and cause damage.
The various types of injuries that can occur lead to a wide variety of outcomes. While some forms of trauma may only have mild, short-term effects, others may lead to devastating life changes.
The New York State Department of Health reports that TBIs resulted in 18,946 hospitalizations, 2,171 deaths and 142,359 emergency room visits in the year 2014 alone. Falling or being struck by or against something were the primary causes for brain injuries that required a trip to the hospital. Hospitalizations were generally due to the same causes, except for the 15 to 24 age group, who were more often placed in the hospital due to motor vehicle accidents.
The most common causes change greatly when looking at deaths related to TBI. Children under age four and those aged 20 to 24 were most likely to die from brain injuries incurred by homicide, while patients over age 65 more often suffered falls. Youth ages five through 14 were more likely to be killed in motor vehicle crashes, and the leading cause of TBI deaths for people ages 15 to 19 and 25 to 64 was suicide.
If you believe you have experienced a traumatic brain injury, contact an experienced attorney today. A lawyer can help you get the treatment you need and the compensation you deserve to recover physically and financially.