Brain injuries can be devastating and long-lasting
Brain injuries can occur when medical professionals fail to properly monitor people or recognize the symptoms of a brain injury.
Medical professionals in Maryland have a responsibility to provide the best care possible to patients. Yet, in some cases, people are actually hurt because of a doctor’s actions. One injury that can occur is to the brain.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most recent information shows that there were 2.5 million traumatic brain injuries in the U.S. during the year 2010. Most of these are attributed to things like falls and car accidents. If doctors fail to recognize the signs of a TBI immediately, people can suffer permanent damage.
Monitoring is important
When people are brought into hospitals with a TBI, it is important for hospital staff to monitor their condition closely. The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke points out that this monitoring should include blood pressure and flow, and the level of oxygen in the brain. Without adequate oxygen, further damage can occur, and this is what hospitals should be focused on preventing, since there is little that can be done to reverse the initial trauma.
Recognizing the signs
A delayed or incorrect diagnosis usually happens because doctors and medical staff fail to recognize the signs of the condition. The Brain Injury Association of America notes that the symptoms can vary depending on where the injury occurred in the brain. For example, if people suffer a hit to the cerebellum, they may show difficulty with coordination or balance. People who are hit in the temporal lobe may lose their hearing, struggle with understanding language or experience issues in remembering things.
Additional signs that indicate a potential head injury include the following:
- Waking and sleeping cycle disruption
- Trouble with seeing things clearly
- Changes in personality
- The inability to correctly perceive visual depth
- Loss of touch
- Struggles with solving problems
It should be noted that symptoms are not always predictable. If two people are hit in the same spot on the head with the same amount of force, it is highly likely that they will demonstrate completely different symptoms. Research has shown this is partly due to different factors such as age, health conditions and the existence of previous injury.
No guarantee of full recovery
One of the biggest challenges for people and their families is that there is no guarantee the victim will fully recover. Some people heal in a matter of weeks or months. Some take years and some never regain their old life back. A serious injury can even leave people unable to care for themselves.
When people suffer an unnecessary injury, they can be left facing additional medical costs, loss of income and other damages. Talking to an attorney can help them understand their options.