The human anatomy includes a well-armored, hard skull for a good reason. The brain may be an astonishingly complex and agile machine made of sensitive, specialized neurons, but it is also terribly vulnerable. Accidents involving traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be devastating since TBI often results in permanent disability. A new study showed that over the long term, TBI includes progressive deterioration of brain cells.
The researchers found that normal repair mechanisms are not operative after a severe brain injury. The neuroinflammation that follows after the acute injury results in more tissue damage and can be chronic. This may put those with TBI at risk for long-term cognitive damage and secondary conditions such as:
- Parkinson’s disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
Every piece of new information about TBI opens the way for developing effective treatments, a goal with important implications for those who have suffered head injuries.
Every year, roughly 1.7 million people suffer a TBI. This type of injury accounts for 30 percent of all injury-related deaths. And because TBIs require extensive, specialized acute care as well as long-term therapy and care, the annual costs run to $52 billion. The majority of TBIs are caused by falls (35 percent), motor vehicle accidents (17 percent) and getting struck by an object or hitting an object (16 percent).
When a TBI occurs in an accident that resulted from the negligence or reckless behavior of another person, the injured person has the legal right to claim compensation. Since a TBI is a serious injury with potential chronic consequences, it is important to work with a lawyer who has experience representing the long-term interests of TBI clients.