Violent blows and jolts to the head or body or the penetration of brain tissue by an object can result in traumatic brain injury (TBI). Individuals suffering from traumatic brain injuries may experience a wide range of physical, sensory, cognitive, or mental symptoms. TBIs can result in long term physical or mental complications, and many are fatal.
Physical damage caused by a head injury may involve bruising, tearing of muscle tissue, and bleeding of the brain. When this occurs, an individual may have loss of consciousness, headaches, vomiting or nausea, increased fatigue, speech problems and vertigo. Brain injuries may also affect sensory and cognitive functioning resulting in blurred visions, light or sound sensitivity, ear ringing, changes in the ability to taste or smell, problems with memory or concentration, depression or anxiety.
Complications of a TBI
A TBI may be categorized as mild, moderate or severe. While symptoms of a mild traumatic brain injury are usually short-lived, a moderate or severe injury may produce symptoms that last a lifetime. Signs of moderate or severe traumatic brain injury range from profound confusion, worsening headaches, convulsions or seizures, pupil dilation, numbness in fingers or toes, slurred speech and extreme agitation. Altered consciousness is one of the most prevalent signs of a moderate or severe concussion and can range from a coma or vegetative state to a minimally conscious state and brain death.
Individuals living with traumatic brain injuries become particularly vulnerable to developing ongoing complications such as recurrent seizures, hydrocephalus (fluid buildup in the brain), brain infections, damaged blood vessels, persistent headaches, vertigo and cranial nerve damage. If these symptoms continue for an extended period of time, the individual may be diagnosed with post-concussion syndrome. Another possible long-term effect of a TBI is the increased risk of a degenerative brain disease such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease or dementia pugilistica.
For sufferers of traumatic brain injuries, everyday mental tasks can prove extremely difficult. TBIs have been associated with compromised cognitive skills resulting in problems with memory, learning, judgment, reasoning and concentration. Executive functioning tasks including problem-solving, multitasking, planning and decision-making may become more difficult. Communication also may become more difficult as individuals struggle to organize their thoughts, participate in conversations and understand nonverbal cues or changes in tone.
Many individuals living with a traumatic brain injury undergo behavioral and emotional changes that impact their relationships and overall wellbeing. They may experience difficulty with self- control, verbal or physical outburst, social anxiety, depression, irritability, lack of empathy, insomnia and mood swings. Some individuals engage in risky behaviors.
Work Accidents Can Lead to TBI
Any blow to the head or body could result in an unseen brain injury and should be taken seriously. Some of the most common causes of traumatic brain injuries include falls from ladders, vehicle wrecks and explosive blasts. Individuals should seek emergency medical care if they begin to exhibit any of the warning signs or notice any behavioral changes. TBI symptoms many not appear immediately after the accident occurs. Individuals who have been hurt on the job should seek immediate medical attention. If the accident involved an injury to the head, the worker should be monitored for signs of traumatic brain injury for several weeks following the accident.
Columbia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Workers Suffering From a Traumatic Brain Injury
If you or a loved has suffered a traumatic brain injury as a result of a workplace accident, compensation may be available to help pay for ongoing medical expenses. At Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. our experienced Columbia Workers’ Compensation lawyers assist families dealing with the aftermaths of workplace accidents. Call us at 803-929-3600 or 866-881-8623 to schedule a free consultation or contact us online.
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