Individuals who suffer a traumatic brain injury can experience serious harm that may lead to permanent disability and the need for long-term care. Victims of TBI may experience impaired thinking, memory, movement, vision, hearing or emotional disruptions. Because of the significant impact a TBI can have on a victim, the effects of a TBI can also impact families of the victim.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, traumatic brain injuries are a serious health problem in the United States. During 2010, approximately 2.5 million injuries or deaths were associated with TBI. During the same period, TBI contributed to 50,000 deaths. Each day in the United States, 138 individuals die from injuries that include TBI. TBI contributes to approximately 30 percent of all injury deaths and also leads to disability.
TBIs occur when a disturbance to the head, such as a bump, blow or jolt, causes a disruption in brain function. TBIs can be both closed and open and may not be immediately noticeable following an accident or injury. Car accidents were the third leading cause from 2006 to 2010 of TBI, accounting for 14 percent of TBIs. In addition, car accidents were the second leading cause of TBI-related deaths from 2006 to 2010, accounting for 26 percent of TBI-related deaths.
Because of the serious nature of traumatic brain injuries, treatment may include long-term care, rehabilitation and therapy, which can all be costly. In addition, some families may lose a loved one to TBI. Because of the varied nature of the damages victims and their families may suffer, legal protections are available to help families recover for the physical, financial and emotional costs of TBI such as medical expenses, among a variety of other types of damages. When impacted by a TBI, it is important to be aware of the legal remedies available to help victims and families focus on recovery.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Fact Sheet,” Accessed April 6, 2015