It has recently been revealed that two big-name athletes who died recently suffered from CTE, once again returning the spotlight to the dangers of traumatic brain injuries and sports.
Two Deaths Newly Linked to CTE'
This week it was determined that NFL star Bubba Smith and BMX legend Dave Mirra both had CTE. Smith died in 2011 and Mirra killed himself earlier this year.
Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, commonly referred to as “CTE” is a progressive degenerative disease often found in athletes that have a history of repetitive brain trauma, including concussions. CTE is only able to be definitively determined posthumously and research is still in its infancy. Because CTE can not be officially ruled on until after a brain is examined posthumously, it is hard to be definitive in a diagnosis, but suspected early symptoms include violence, mood swings and depression.
As Mirra’s wife Lauren told ESPN during an interview, “I started to notice changes in his mood. And then it quickly started to get worse. He wasn’t able to be present in any situation or conversation, so it was hard to be in a relationship with him to any degree.”
While more and more cases of CTE are being determined in athletes, it is not the only traumatic brain injury that can occur.
Traumatic Brain Injury, or TBI, is brain dysfunction caused by an outside force, usually a violent blow to the head, such as when football players tackle each other. TBI is the leading cause of death and disability in people aged 1 to 44, typically resulting from motor vehicle crashes, sports injuries, and simple falls. An estimated 1.5 million head injuries occur every year.
People suffering from TBI can experience (among other symptoms):
The range of severity in TBI are classified as follows: mild, moderate, and severe. It’s important to note that a mild TBI is just as serious as a severe one. The levels just indicate the loss of consciousness that occurred and the mental alteration that results from the trauma.
Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
But it’s not just football players and BMX bikers who take numerous hits to the head that are victims of TBI. Across the nation, an estimated 1.7 million people sustain TBIs annually. Of that number: 52,000 die, 275,000 are hospitalized, and 1.365 million are treated and released from emergency rooms.
Traumatic brain injury is brain dysfunction caused by an external force, such as a violent blow or jolt to the head or body during an accident, or an object penetrating the skull.
There are various levels of traumatic brain injuries, but all of them should be taken seriously, as even TBIs termed “mild” can have serious consequences.
Mild traumatic brain injury, such as a slight or mild concussion can cause temporary dysfunction of brain cells. More serious traumatic brain injury can result in bruising, torn tissues, bleeding, and other physical damage to the brain. This can result in long-term complications and even death.
The effects of a TBI are not just limited to physical, but also psychological effects. And though some signs or symptoms appear immediately, some only appear days or weeks later. In cases like this, because the incident has occurred so long ago, you might not even realize that you are dealing with a symptom of a TBI.
What Causes TBIs?
Any number of things can cause a TBI, including a car accident, bus accident, or a faulty product. Below we outline some of these common accidents that are also common personal injury accidents that would warrant a lawsuit.
Pursue TBI Lawsuit - Working with a Personal Injury Attorney
If you or a family member has sustained a TBI as the result of a car accident, motorcycle accident, elevator accident, or someone else’s negligence, you’ll need to know how to pursue a lawsuit that will get you compensation for money and time spent in recovery.
A personal injury attorney handles any number of things that are “personal injuries,” including: car and bus accidents, elevator accidents, accidents that occur on city streets, bed bugs, dog bites, and construction accidents and wrongful deaths.
A personal injury can be defined as a physical and/or mental injury that occurs because of someone else’s negligence, intentional actions, or strict liability.
Negligence: when another party fails to act with reasonable care. For example: if you suffer physical injuries as the result of a driver rear ending you because they are not paying attention, the injuries could be deemed a personal injury due to negligence.
Intentional Harm: when another person sets out to hurt you. Examples include: battery, assault, and false imprisonment.
Strict Liability: if you are injured by a product (such as a malfunctioning car), anyone involved in the production, distribution, or sale of the defective product can be held responsible.
Reasons for Working with a Personal Injury Attorney
Working with a Personal Injury Attorney After an Accident
If you or a loved one have been an victim of a personal injury accident, you should immediately contact a personal injury attorney that understands the specific laws around these types of accidents. They will be able to perform a full investigation and build your case. It’s crucial that you work with someone that knows the intricacies of the laws surrounding these types of cases as well as your specific state’s laws. The attorneys at Personal Injury Attorneys PLLC have experience handling personal injury cases such as elevator accidents, automobile accidents, and slip and fall accidents. They will help build a case to ensure you receive everything you need to recover from your specific accident.