Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are a common injury from accidents in Kansas. Concussions are the most well-known type of brain injury, with the more serious TBIs being open or closed head injuries. The severity, symptoms, and medical treatment of TBIs are wide ranging, and understanding this is critical to a person’s medical and legal claim recovery.
Our nationally recognized brain injury attorneys handle TBI cases throughout Kansas and Missouri. If you or a loved one have suffered a concussion or head injury in an accident, please know you don’t have to go it alone. We’re here to help, call us today at 816-203-0143 for a free consultation.
How Traumatic Brain Injuries Occur in Kansas
In Kansas, the number of TBIs resulting from accidents has been on the rise. TBIs can occur from the following situations:
- Vehicle accidents including car accidents, truck collisions, motorcycle accidents, bicycle accidents, and pedestrian accidents
- Falls, particularly among the elderly and young children
- Accidents in general, caused by the negligence of a person or place of business.
- Sporting activities and recreational events
Traumatic Brain Injuries After Kansas Accidents
A traumatic brain injury is an injury to the brain caused by a blow or jarring to the head from a sudden force or penetrating trauma. You don’t have to lose consciousness to suffer a TBI. In fact, you don’t even have to hit your head. Sudden, unexpected movement or momentum changes, such as whiplash, can be enough to cause a TBI. These injuries can range from mild to severe.
Depending on the symptoms, mild to moderate TBIs may require outpatient therapy and monitoring by a medical specialist. For more severe TBIs, a person may require hospital care or more intense treatment.
There are two categories of brain injuries:
- closed head injury
- open head injury
A closed head injury is an injury that occurs within the head of the accident victim. The accident impact causes the brain to be jarred within the skull. A concussion is a mild TBI and the most common closed head injury.
Most people recover quickly from a concussion, however in some instances a concussion can lead to more serious complications. About 10%–20% of people with concussions experience post-concussion syndrome and still feel symptoms after three months. Being thoroughly checked for injuries after an accident is your top priority.
The other type of head injury is called an open head injury. This occurs when the force caused by an accident or collision is strong enough to break the skull. The damage to the brain tissue occurs from a foreign object that fractures the skull and pierces the brain. These penetrating injuries can be severe and even fatal.
Types & Grades of TBIs from Kansas Accidents
If you suspect a brain injury after a Kansas accident, you should seek immediate medical attention to get a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. TBIs are classified with different types and grades, including:
Types of TBIs:
- Mild concussion (mTBI): Three out of four TBIs every year are concussions. These mTBIs can include brief alterations of consciousness such as feeling “dazed” or loss of consciousness for less than 30 minutes. May experience confusion for about one day, which is different from difficulties with attention or memory.
- Moderate TBI: associated with loss of consciousness for over 30 minutes but less than one day. Confusion can last for up to one week.
- Severe TBI: Lose consciousness for over one full day. Typically associated with changes on head CT or brain MRI.
- Uncomplicated TBI: Head CT/brain MRI are normal, regardless of mild, moderate or severe grade.
- Complicated TBI: Head CT or brain MRI show changes, such as bleeding.
- Closed: Most TBIs are closed. From a force that didn’t penetrate the skull but injured the brain, causing it to swell.
- Open: May be called a penetrating TBI. When something goes through the skull and if it goes into the brain, it directly damages brain tissue.
- Nontraumatic: Also known as a hypoxic/anoxic brain injury. Some TBIs aren’t from trauma. They can result from strokes, seizures and events like choking and near-fatal drownings. These incidents can deprive the brain of oxygen.
Grades of Concussion TBIs:
Concussion severity doesn’t necessarily depend on how hard the blow to the head, but how badly your brain was injured. Doctors developed a grading system to explain how severe the concussion is:
- Grade 1: You did not lose consciousness. If you became confused, it passed quickly. If you had any symptoms, they went away within 15 minutes.
- Grade 2: You did not lose consciousness. You may have been confused, but it didn’t last very long. Any symptoms related to the concussion lasted longer than 15 minutes.
- Grade 3: You lost consciousness, even if only for a few moments.
Traumatic Brain Injury Symptoms After Kansas Accidents
The human brain is complex and unique, so one individual’s TBI will vary from another’s. Brain injuries can impact different aspects of a person’s daily life, including physical, mental, and emotional.
A TBI is often called the “invisible injury” because an accident victim or their family members may see subtle signs or get a sense that something’s not quite right yet think nothing of it. Since the jarring actually disrupts the brain, it can cause bruising, bleeding, and even the destruction of nerve cells.
In a Kansas car accident, for example, the violent and sudden movement or turning of the head can cause damage to the nerve fibers, even without the brain being struck by an object. This is why it’s important to understand the warning signs.
Common TBI symptoms and warning signs include:
- Chronic low-grade headaches
- Changes in cognitive function, trouble remembering, concentrating, or solving problems
- Difficulty with reading and/or writing
- Slurred speech or loss of ability to speak
- Visual impairments, including sensitivity to light or blurred vision, or hallucinations
- Difficulty recognizing faces and visually locating objects
- Fatigue and drowsiness
- Mood changes; feelings of sadness, irritability, anxiety, aggressiveness
- Physical mobility issues, such as loss of balance or coordination, Poor control of voluntary movements
- Impaired gross and fine motor coordination
- Difficulty with hand-eye coordination, impaired spatial orientation
- Tremors, dizziness, and nausea
A TBI can impair one’s ability to perform everyday activities and overall quality of life. Unfortunately, traumatic brain injuries are one of the leading causes of disability which may include anxiety, depression, PTSD, brain bleed, or seizures, among others.
Getting immediate medical attention and treatment is imperative to prevent the TBI from worsening or causing complications. Prompt medical attention is also important for your personal injury claim against the at-fault party. If you have questions about what to do next after a Kansas brain injury, contact us at 816-203-0143 for a free consultation.
Dealing with TBIs After a Kansas Accident
The moments after a Kansas accident can be chaotic and disorienting. This can reduce your ability to notice the warning signs of your injuries. The symptoms of a TBI can be deceptive, either seemingly minor or even delayed. For this reason, you should not underestimate the impact of an accident based strictly on observable symptoms.
- Immediate TBI symptoms may include headache, loss of consciousness, dizziness, disorientation, vomiting, loss of balance, blurry vision, slurred speech, and more.
- Delayed TBI symptoms, appearing days or weeks post-accident, can encompass memory or concentration problems, mood changes or mood swings, depression, anxiety, irritability, sensitivity to light or sound, loss of mobility, and disturbed sleep.
Medical practitioners often say that even though a brain injury is usually the last type of injury to be recognized it’s often the first type of injury to occur. TBIs are often first noticed by family members and loved ones of the accident victim before they notice it themselves.
You may want to ask your medical provider the following questions if you’re diagnosed with a TBI:
- How severe is my TBI?
- What is the best treatment for me?
- When should symptoms improve?
- How can I prevent future brain injuries?
Our Traumatic Brain Injury Attorneys Can Help
When you or a loved one are involved in an accident and suffer an injury to the brain, you don’t have to face it alone. Our experienced traumatic brain injury attorneys know how to protect your rights, and get the maximum amount of compensation for your injury.
Call us today at 816-203-0143 for a free consultation. You can also instantly download our free Traumatic Brain Injury Checklist that has helped many brain injury survivors become aware of the signs and symptoms to look for after an accident. We’re here to help, and on your side.