Head, shoulder and brain injuries are common in vehicle crashes here in Kennesaw and in other parts of Georgia. Because of the differential masses of the various vehicles involved and because of the sudden-stop inertial forces involved, even so-called “minor” crashes can cause serious brain injuries — often labeled traumatic brain injury or TBI. If you have been in a car or truck accident that resulted in TBI, you are entitled to sue for compensation. This article will discuss some features and warning signs of TBI.
But, in addition to the well-known effects of TBI, a new study from Denmark has recently been published adding yet another potential cause of alarm: TBI can nearly double a person’s chance of suicide. We will discuss the new study below.
If a loved one has recently committed suicide following a vehicle collision, you should investigate whether TBI was involved and whether the suicide might have been caused by the TBI.
Kennesaw Auto Accident Lawyers: Traumatic Brain Injuries
TBI resulting from automobile wrecks are common. See a general report from CNN here. Based on 2013 statistics, motor vehicle crashes accounted for 14 percent of all TBIs that resulted in emergency room visits adding up to more than 2.5 million ER visits, nearly 300,000 hospitalizations, and nearly 50,000 deaths. See the CDC report here.
Most TBIs are caused by a force trauma — blunt or edged — to the head. But, TBI is common in the military and researchers have discovered that shock-waves can cause TBI even in the absence of an actual force trauma to the head or neck. In a similar fashion, whiplash can cause TBI in a car accident even in the absence of the head striking the steering wheel or anther hard surface in the interior of your car. The injury to the brain is caused by the brain itself being jammed and compressed against the bone of the skull. In an obvious way, a blow to the head will cause this, but whiplash-type motions can also cause the brain to be crushed against the interior of the skull. As noted, military researchers have discovered that blast compression waves will do the same thing. Thus, medically, TBI is possible flowing from any event that disrupts the normal functioning of your brain. In the non-military context, the leading cause of TBI is falling and the second leading cause is being hit by something or being thrown against something — exactly what happens to your head and body during a car wreck.
Symptoms of TBI include:
- Losing consciousness — even briefly
- Loss of vision or hearing
- Loss of balance
- Muscle impairment — mild to severe like paralysis
- Memory loss
- Personality disorders
You can read more about side effects on the website of the Mayo Clinic. The new study discussed below adds a new symptom: an increased chance of suicide.
Note that, so far, we have discussed TBI in terms of “closed-event-trauma.” But, of course, the most severe forms of TBI are caused by penetration injuries where there is structural damage to the brain and brain tissue. With respect to Kennesaw auto accidents, the most common skull-penetration-TBI is from glass piercing the skull bone when an occupant is ejected.
TBI is the general category of injury. A more specific list of TBI injuries includes brain contusions (bruises and tissue compression), concussions (stretched blood vessels causing nerve damage), diffuse axonal injuries (where bleeding, nerve and tissue tearing is caused by the brain being shaken) and structural damage to the brain caused by penetration. TBI is serious and if you have suffered from any of these symptoms following a crash or collision, you should seek medical attention.
Kennesaw Auto Accident Lawyers: TBI and Increased Chances of Suicide
As noted, a newly published study has linked TBI to a higher risk of suicide. See the study here.
The study was based on Danish medical records. The researchers — Danish physicians and medical researchers — reviewed medical records and studies to investigate any correlation between TBI and suicides. They based their study on 35 years of records involving 34,529 suicides. The researchers concluded that, compared with the general population without TBI, those with TBI had almost twice the increased risk of suicide (incident rate ratio of 1.90). The increased risk was based on two findings: one, they found a link between TBI and suicidal ideation — thinking about committing suicide — and, two, higher suicide rates correlated with more severe TBI and a greater number of hospital visits/medical procedures. The increased suicide risk was highest during the first six months following, in general, the event from which the TBI resulted.
As noted above, if you have been in a car or truck accident that resulted in TBI, you are entitled to sue for compensation from the person or persons who wrongfully caused the accident. In addition to the other physical damage caused to your body (such as broken bones), you can recover for the physical damage caused by TBI such as gray-matter and white-matter brain tissue atrophy and the precipitation or acceleration of neurodegeneration. Further, studies have shown that TBI events increase one’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and motor neuron disease. You should be compensated for these increased risks. Finally, if they exist, one is entitled to seek recovery for emotional and cognitive effects of TBI including post-traumatic stress disorder, postconcussive syndrome and any treatment necessary for increased suicidal ideation.
Kennesaw Auto Accidents Lawyers: Contact the Roger Ghai Law Offices
For more information, contact the Kennesaw accident and personal injury attorneys at the Roger Ghai Law Offices If you or a loved one has been injured due to someone else’s careless, negligent or wrongful behavior, we are experienced and proven lawyers who can help you obtain the compensation to which you are entitled. We provide legal services for the residents of Cobb County including the communities of Kennesaw, Acworth, Marietta, and the surrounding areas. Click here to schedule your consultation.