Traumatic Brain Injuries Have Many CausesA traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be a life-changing event for the victim as well as for his or her family
A TBI may cause drastic impairments and changes in a person’s mental and physical abilities, as well as changes in personality. There are many potential causes of this injury, some of them the result of a negligent or even an intentional act by another person or entity.
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers the following facts about TBI:
- TBI is caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that is severe enough to disrupt the normal function of the brain.
- If a strong enough force is put onto the head or upper body causing the head to violently snap back and forth, brain tissue can be injured as it hits the inside of the skull.
- The severity of a TBI may range from “mild” (resulting in a temporary change in mental status or consciousness) to “severe” (an extended period of unconsciousness, memory loss or loss of function after the injury).
- Most TBIs are mild and are commonly called concussions.
- The effects of a TBI may last for only a few days or for the rest of one’s life.
- Effects may include impaired thinking or memory, movement, sensation or emotional functioning.
- Multiple, successive blows to the head can cause worse damage, even over a fairly long period of time between blows.
According to CDC estimates:
- TBI is a major cause of death and disability in the country, contributing to about 30% of all injury deaths.
- About 138 people die in the U.S. every day from injuries that include TBI.
- About 2.5 million emergency department visits, hospitalizations or deaths were related to TBI (by themselves or in combination with other injuries) in the U.S. in 2010.
- The deaths of more than 50,000 people were TBI-related in 2010.
- From 2001 to 2010, the rates of TBI-related emergency department visits went up by 70%, hospitalization increased by 11%, and death rates decreased by 7%.
- An estimated 248,418 children (19 or younger) were treated in 2009 in the country’s emergency departments for sports and recreation related concussions or TBIs.
The leading causes of TBI are:
- Falls (40.5%) – These disproportionately affect the youngest and oldest age groups, causing 55% of TBIs suffered by children aged 0 to 14 and 81% of TBIs in adults 65 or older.
- Unknown or other (19%),
- Being struck by or against objects (15.5%),
- Motor vehicle accidents (14.3%) – This is the leading cause of TBI deaths in those aged 5-24.
- Physical assaults (10.7%) – This is the No. 1 cause of TBI-related death for children zero to four.
Many of those suffering from TBIs have injuries caused by the negligence or intentional acts others, including:
- Lack of proper tree maintenance can cause dead and diseased limbs and branches to fall on people striking them in the head and even killing them.
- Bicyclists can suffer TBIs during accidents caused by negligent vehicle drivers.
- People may suffer injuries after being struck by objects near construction zones or in buildings were negligent maintenance work is being done.
- Slips and falls with head injury can be caused by poorly designed, inadequately maintained or unlit walk areas.
- Children and young adults engaging in organized sports may not be properly trained or supervised or provided with proper equipment.
- Crime victims’ injuries may be caused not only by their attackers but also by property owners who failed to take proper steps to keep their businesses safe.
If you or a loved one has suffered a serious TBI through no fault of your own, you need to know your rights and seek legal protection. We can help. Call Julie Butcher, the Kentucky Vehicle Accident Lawyer at 859-233-3641 or fill out our online contact form for a free consultation today.