If you are able to walk away from a car crash, you probably count your lucky stars. However, you are no doubt stunned if the doctor you see after the accident provides a diagnosis of traumatic brain injury. What happens now?
After the crash
As the victim of a vehicle accident, you will feel shaky, and the impact may leave you with what you believe is a minor injury, such as a sore neck. The headache could begin a few hours after the crash, and you wonder if you sustained a concussion, which is when you decide to seek medical attention. This is very wise because a concussion can precede a diagnosis of TBI.
About a traumatic brain injury
Two forms of traumatic brain injury exist. An open TBI is where a foreign object penetrates the skull and enters the brain. A closed TBI, which is more common, occurs when there is a blow to the head, but this kind of injury is not necessarily apparent at the time of a collision. In addition to headaches, symptoms, which may not show up for hours or even days, include fatigue, blurred vision, problems with concentration, problems with balance and sensitivity to noise or light, among others.
Recovering from TBI
The good news is that once your condition stabilizes, the brain cells begin to repair themselves, and the healthy parts of the brain take over some of the work the damaged parts normally perform. Treatment depends on the severity of the injury, but you can expect to go through some type of rehabilitation. The purpose of this is to help you relearn skills, if necessary, and to assist you in compensating for any impairment that may linger as a result of the crash.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, some 2 million people suffer TBI every year in our country, and 286,000 such injuries occur as the result of a vehicle crash. Explore your legal options. If the other driver was at fault for the vehicle accident that left you with a traumatic brain injury, you have the right to file a claim for compensation to cover your medical expenses, pain and suffering and more.