Study finds big jump in ER visits for traumatic brain injuries

A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can forever change a person’s life. Millions of people suffer TBIs every year, and now a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association has found a nearly 30 percent increase in the number of emergency room visits for TBIs from 2006 to 2010.

That statistic is generating questions about whether the number of TBIs is going up or health-care professionals are accurately reporting more injuries. Regardless, it’s clear that TBIs are very common.

What Is A Traumatic Brain Injury?                             

Although the answer might seem obvious, the truth is that TBIs come in many forms. According to the American Speech, Language and Hearing Association, there are two basic types of TBIs:  injuries that penetrate the skull (such as a bullet wound) and closed head injuries (such as a blow to the head).

The degree of seriousness depends on the situation, but most TBI victims suffer from a variety of physical problems such as:

  • Hearing loss.
  • Tinnitus (ringing or buzzing in the ears).
  • Headaches.
  • Seizures.
  • Dizziness.
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Decreased smell or taste.
  • Reduced strength and coordination in the body, arms and legs.

While some TBIs can be treated quickly and allow victims to return to normal life, many more victims experience long-term effects that can last for the rest of their lives and result in significant impairments, high medical bills, lost income, physical pain and suffering and more.

According to US News & World Report, the recent research involved an analysis of data from more than 950 hospitals across the country. The researchers found that there were 2.5 million emergency department visits for TBIs in 2010, a nearly 30 percent increase from 2006.

Concussions and unspecified injuries accounted for most of the increase in TBI visits, and the largest increase was seen in children younger than age 3 and adults older than age 60.

According to the lead researcher, one possible explanation for the increase is that physicians are more likely to record a TBI in a patient’s medical record – even when it isn’t the main reason for the patient’s visit. That may be due to greater awareness about TBIs as a result of publicity about head injuries suffered by professional football players.

Compensation for TBIs

Sip-and-fall accidents and car accidents are the most common ways people suffer TBIs. Anyone who has been the victim of a TBI due to someone else’s negligence may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost income, physical pain and suffering, emotional distress, rehabilitation and other costs.

Contact Our Colorado Car Accident Law Firm

Attorney Steve Ray is a former Marine Corps judge now fights for the rights of accident victims in Fort Collins and Northern Colorado. If you have been seriously injured in a car accident, he brings more than 35 years of legal experience and military discipline to pursuing your claim for compensation.

He will meet with you to discuss your case and, if a claim is possible, pursue the maximum financial recovery available. If we cannot recover money for you, you will pay nothing for our legal services.

Contact us today to discuss your case in a free consultation.