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A Closer Look at Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

We have seen a lot of news coverage around the country about police-involved shootings and the protests that increasingly follow.  One recent shooting in Charlotte that has led to considerable protests from the community and across the nation was partially captured on cell phone video where the wife of the decedent can be heard yelling not to shoot her husband and that he has a “TBI” or traumatic brain injury and cannot understand what the police were telling him to do.  After the shooting, the decedent’s family told CNN that he had recently survived a nearly fatal motorcycle accident and suffered a traumatic brain injury that left him with substantial brain damage.

skull-1415989In light of this case, CNN decided to take a closer look at what it means to have a traumatic brain injury and also the cause of traumatic brain injury.  There are various possible causes for a patient to suffer a traumatic brain injury, and while some of these causes do not involve any type of impact, the vast majority of traumatic brain injuries occur following a serious accident.As our Boston personal injury attorneys have seen in various cases, a traumatic brain injury can result from severe shaking of a person’s head.  While this does happen to adults in some cases, it is more common in young children and infants.  Most people are aware of what has been termed “shaken baby syndrome.”

In addition to shaking, a traumatic brain injury can also be caused by an impact to the head that may or may not result in an open head wound.  An injury to the brain where there is no cut to the outside of the head or scalp is often called a closed head wound.  In the past, it was not always suspected that a brain injury occurred if there was not an open head wound, and this leads to many more instances of untreated brain injuries and even death.  One of the major causes of traumatic brain injuries in the United States is from car accidents.  It should be noted, that while a head injury can occur when someone who is not wearing a seatbelt slams against the windshield or is ejected from a crashed vehicle and hits the road surface, a traumatic brain injury can also occur if the victim is wearing a seatbelt and the head violently snaps back and forth in a whiplash motion in a serious car accident.

This violent movement is enough to get the brain to slam into the inside of skull causing a concussion or other type of serious brain injury. This is the reason that race car drivers are required to wear a head and neck safety device (HANS) to keep their head still in a serious crash.  These were made mandatory in NASCAR following the death of Dale Earnhardt, Sr.

Brain injuries can result in significant pain and suffering, and also in tremendous rehabilitation costs and medical expenses that can become the basis for a large award of damages in a personal injury case.

If you have suffered personal injury in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.

What is a traumatic brain injury?, September 23, 2016, By Debra Goldschmidt, CNN

More Blog Entries:

Eye Test as Means to Test for Concussion and Brain Injury, July 23, 2016, Boston Brain Injury Lawyer Blog