Over 1.5 million people will experience a traumatic brain injury every year and over 50,000 of those will die due to their injuries. Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a complicated injury with a wide range of symptoms and impairments. The impact can be devastating to those suffering from the traumatic experience and their loved ones. brain injury
What is TBI?
Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can occur once the head has been struck unexpectedly by an object. It can also happen if the material penetrates the skull and goes into the tissue of the brain. Symptoms of this type of injury can be mild or critical, and it depends on the amount of damage that the brain has experienced.
What are the Symptoms?
A mild case of TBI can include the patient remaining conscious or only losing consciousness for a brief period of time. Some other moderate symptoms include fatigue, headache, dizziness, ear ringing and confusion. People suffering from severe TBI usually suffer from similar symptoms, but they may also experience vomiting, seizures, dilated pupils, impaired speech, unable to wake up from sleep and confusion.
Forms of Treatment
You should seek immediate medical attention if you show any signs of mild to severe TBI. There isn’t much that can be done to overturn the damage and most hospitals will do everything possible to keep the injury from progressing. Imaging tests are detrimental in diagnosing the patient since the main concern is to make sure sufficient oxygen is being supplied to the brain. In a mild case, x-rays are helpful in determining if there are any fractures or spinal problems. A CT scan is necessary for treating patients suffering from severe cases of TBI. Rehabilitation, speech therapy and occupational therapy are other treatment programs to aid those suffering from severe TBI.
What is the Outcome?
Over half of the patient’s suffering from severe head trauma will require surgery to deal with the ruptured vessels or swollen brain tissue. Impairments from the TBI depend on where the injury has occurred, the age of the person, the condition and overall health, and the level of damage. Other disabilities include cognitive problems, loss of a person’s sensory abilities, behavioral issues and lack of communication. Severe injuries could result in a person in a vegetative state for long periods of time.
Recovery from a TBI related injury depends on the person and the type of brain injury that they’ve sustained. It can take as little as a month and up to several years after the trauma has taken place. The shorter the amount of time a patient was in a coma, the better the outcome. The same can be said for the patient’s experience with amnesia. People over 59 and under the age of two can have the worst recovery prediction because of their age.