Some injuries show up clearly immediately after a car crash. Broken bones, cuts, and bruises are easily identified right away. But traumatic brain injury (TBI) can work differently. Unless the accident victim, family, friends, and doctors know what to look for, TBI can go undetected, making it far harder to treat later on.
To identify a traumatic brain injury, you need to know what to look for. The symptoms of TBI are often subtle and can easily be missed unless you know the physical, sensory, and mental symptoms to watch for. After an auto accident be on the lookout for:
- Loss of consciousness (passing out),
- Nausea or vomiting,
- Fatigue or drowsiness,
- Sleeping problems,
- Dizziness or a loss of balance,
- Blurred vision, ringing ears, or a bad taste in the mouth,
- Sensitivity to light or sound,
- Confusion or disorientation,
- Memory or concentration problems,
- Mood swings,
- Depression, or
Not all these symptoms show up with every concussion. So keep an eye out for any unusual symptoms after a crash. If you think you or a loved one has suffered a traumatic brain injury, see your doctor right away.
After an auto accident, your doctor may use a number of tests to determine whether you show TBI symptoms. Most emergency rooms now do an initial concussion screening that involves tests of memory, coordination, and sensory abilities, but these can be limited by other circumstances involved in your crash.
When TBI is suspected, your doctor may order neuropsychological testing. This is a pen-and-paper evaluation tests everything from memory to language, reading to IQ, even your senses. From this test, doctors will be able to diagnose what parts of your brain were injured and what treatments you may need.
A Magnetic Resonance Imaging test (MRI) is also often used to confirm a TBI diagnosis. An MRI creates an image of your brain. In particular, Diffuse Tensor Imaging (DTI) is an advanced form of MRI that allows your doctor to clearly see what parts of the brain have been affected.
Once your doctors are able to diagnose the type and severity of the injury, and the part of the brain affected, they can put together a treatment plan that will help minimize secondary injury and speed the recovery process. Many TBI patients are able to completely recover from their injuries, but others face a lifetime of rehabilitation and limited brain function.
The best way to ensure you are able to recover from TBI symptoms is to make sure to receive quick, thorough, and ongoing treatment. The attorneys at Christensen Law can help you file the necessary claims with your auto insurance company to make sure the costs of those tests and treatments are covered after an auto accident. If you are facing TBI because of a car crash, contact Christensen Law today to schedule a free consultation.