Every year, approximately two million people sustain head injuries, most of which are minor because the skull provides the brain with protection. However, over half a million head injuries each year require hospitalization. Injuries to the head are so common that almost everyone in their lifetime will sustain some sort of trauma to the head.
According to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal, Brain Injuries that are referred to as “mild” or “minor” are often actually the underlying cause of social, academic, economic and personal failures. The research conducted found that “minor” or “mild” head traumas can cause a variety of problems ranging from learning disabilities to homelessness and alcoholism. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates 5.3 million Americans suffer from mental or physical disability due to brain injury. However, the CDC admits an undercount because this number does not include people who did not seek treatment for a severe blow to the head or who were sent home from a doctor’s office or emergency room with little or no treatment.
According to Wayne A. Gordon, director of the brain injury Research Center at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, “Unidentified traumatic brain injury is an unrecognized major source of social and vocational failure.” Research by his team has consistently found high rates of “hidden” head trauma when screening various populations in New York schools, addiction programs and the general population.
The article in the Wall Street Journal relates the story of a college instructor who, over the course of a year after a “minor” head injury, lost her ability to read, keep her home orderly and maintain friendships. She tried to continue teaching but found bright lights and a hectic environment overwhelming, and was unable to keep her job.
Common causes of traumatic head injuries include traffic accidents, work accidents, recreational accidents and industrial accidents. However, a minor head injury could result from something as simple as a bump to the head or a seemingly uneventful slip and fall. Symptoms of a severe head injury can be bleeding, altered level of consciousness, confusion, convulsions, skull fracture, severe headache, loss of consciousness, blurred vision, pupil changes, stiff neck, slurred speech, fluid draining from nose, mouth or ears, increased drowsiness, and/or a scalp wound. Symptoms of a minor head injury may include headache, nausea, fatigue, insomnia and dizziness. It is important to seek medical help regardless of your symptoms. Proper diagnostic tests such as CT scans, MRI’s, and x-rays are helpful in determining the nature and extent of a head or brain injury.
A delay in recognizing a brain injury can be extremely harmful and in some instance, even fatal. The Pittsburgh, PA law firm of Rosen Louik & Perry has experienced trial lawyers who have obtained outstanding results in cases involving traumatic brain injury, head injury, personal injury, wrongful death, auto accident, trucking accident, industrial accidents and medical malpractice. At Rosen Louik & Perry, we pride ourselves on providing the highest quality service. We believe people deserve compensation for injuries caused by the negligence of others. Please contact us today for your FREE consultation.