Mark Casto | December 14, 2023 | Personal Injury
The brain is perhaps the most powerful organ in the human body but also the most delicate. When injured, any damage is often permanent, and even when it isn’t, victims typically find themselves facing a long road to recovery. This significantly disrupts personal and work lives.
Fortunately, many who experience a brain injury are entitled to pursue compensation for their losses, but the amount of which depends on the severity of the brain injury.
First and foremost, what does “TBI” mean? The answer is a traumatic brain injury, and there are three types of TBI severity that any can fall under. Nevertheless, regardless of the traumatic brain injury categories an individual’s harm falls under, a brain injury is always deemed a medical emergency.
The four types of brain injuries are all capable of causing symptoms consistent with all three TBI levels and even death. In many cases, they occur due to negligently caused accidents or errors, but they may sometimes stem from intentional violence.
Level 1: Mild
For a TBI, levels of severity start at mild. In many medical and scientific circles, a mild TBI is generally regarded as similar to a concussion, which typically involves the temporary loss regular brain function.
Victims do face several symptoms, such as:
- Nausea or vomiting
- Grogginess or fogginess
- Uncharacteristic irritability
- Vision and audio problems
- Short-term or long-term memory loss
Be that as it may, a mild TBI, despite the descriptor, can still prove quite serious, as victims may lose consciousness for a few seconds or minutes at a time.
Level 2: Moderate
In the middle of the three types of TBIs are those that are moderate. Sufferers of moderate TBIs experience many of the symptoms listed above with mild TBIs, but they burden these individuals for much longer, and they will lose consciousness for up to a few hours.
As the trauma experienced is typically more extensive, and because of the length of the disturbance to brain function, moderate TBI victims typically need medium- to long-term medical and psychological care and treatment.
Level 3: Severe
The last of the three levels of traumatic brain injury is severe. These injuries are typically the result of extensive traumatic damage to the brain, such as crushing or piercing injuries. Victims of severe TBIs are at a high risk of death and, more often than not, never fully recover to the level of brain function at which they were before their injuries.
Brain contusions are, in the simplest terms, bruises to the brain. They result from powerful blows to the head and may also result in significant damage to the skull and surrounding skin.
When a brain contusion occurs, the small blood vessels in the brain rupture and leak underneath the skin, resulting in bluish-purple skin discoloration. However, that is not the only effect of leaking vessels. They may also lead to a buildup of pressure between the skin, skull, and brain, which can severely damage the brain if allowed to become too high.
Types of incidents that typically cause brain bruising include any activity or occurrence that can cause a person to suffer a blow to the head, such as:
- Automobile accidents
- Sporting activities
- Assault and battery
- Slips and falls
- Accidents caused by dangerously defective products
- On-the-job accidents at dangerous worksites
The damage that the brain experiences may either occur on the side of the head that receives the blow or on the direct opposite side. This is primarily because the brain is suspended in cranial fluid, which causes it to shift back and forth quite easily when traumatic force is applied.
Anoxic Brain Injuries
When the brain is deprived of a proper supply of oxygen for a long enough time, normal brain function ceases, and brain cells begin to die. As you likely know, the longer the brain is without sufficient oxygen, the more likely it is that severe and irreversible brain damage — also known as an anoxic brain injury (ABI)— will occur.
Instances that can lead to an ABI include any event or action that denies a person’s brain oxygen, such as:
- Carbon monoxide poisoning
- Blood clots
- Cardiac arrest
- Medical malpractice
Regarding that final bullet point, healthcare professionals may easily cause an ABI through various instances of medical negligence that ultimately results in oxygen starvation. In most cases, ABIs in a medical context do not come about from trauma but instead from pathological or medicinal problems.
Penetrating Brain Injuries
Penetrating brain injuries (PBIs) are typically the most damaging of brain injuries, and they come about when an object pierces the brain, typically resulting in severe cerebral damage. Unlike contusions or anoxic brain injuries, piercing injuries destroy brain tissue and often cause it to be ejected from the victim’s head.
Any of the following may cause the penetration or piercing that causes these types of TBIs:
- Bullets or shrapnel
- Knives or other sharp objects
- Pieces of bones or other body parts
As mentioned, most cases of PBIs lead to some of the most significant levels of brain damage, loss of the use of important bodily functions, and death. However, there are rare instances when a person’s brain may be pierced without any noticeable deficits except for the injury itself.
Diffuse Axonal Injury
Diffuse axonal injuries (DAIs) are quite common and involve extensive injury to the brain’s white matter. The material is made up of axons, which serve to transmit electrical signals to and from the brain throughout the body. Extreme twisting force is typically the cause of DAIs, as are forces that cause axons to stretch or tear.
With that said, common situations that lead to DAIs include the following:
- Slip and fall injuries
- Sports injuries
- Traffic crashes
- Falls from high places
Not only does the trauma lead to damaged axons, but it also can cause the brain to produce certain chemicals that outright damage it.
The Future With a Brain Injury
Many brain injury victims have hope for the future and can make full recoveries. Sadly, just as many others only recover partially or not at all. Regardless of their respective outcomes, most brain injury victims face significant financial, emotional, and mental impacts that derail their lives. Thankfully, with the help of an experienced brain injury lawyer, many can receive vital compensation from those who have caused them harm.
Contact a Columbus Brain Injury Lawyer at Mark Casto Personal Injury Law Firm Today For More Help
While it may seem unnecessary to hire a lawyer for a “minor” car accident, several considerations make it worth exploring. With the complexities of the legal and insurance systems, lawyers help determine liability, evaluate damages, and navigate the claims process’s ins and outs.
If you were injured in an accident in Columbus, Georgia, and need legal help, contact our Columbus Personal Injury accident lawyers at Mark Casto Personal Injury Law Firm to schedule a free case review today.
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