South Lake Tahoe Brain Injury Lawyer

South Lake Tahoe Brain Injury Lawyer

During the past few decades, a lot of resources have been directed toward researching traumatic brain injuries. As a result, doctors and researchers have developed new diagnostic and treatment modalities. Despite these advancements, head and brain injuries continue to impact countless individuals and their loved ones every year. When someone has been diagnosed with a brain injury, it is essential to learn everything possible about the damage. This can help individuals and their family members understand the injury and the recovery process.

How is a Brain Injury Diagnosed?

There are several steps involved in making the diagnosis of a traumatic brain injury. When someone presents to the doctor following a traumatic event, the physician will ask questions about the patient’s symptoms. Some of the most common signs of a head injury include a severe headache, memory loss, nausea, vomiting, and emotional irritability. If the doctor believes that the symptoms are consistent with a brain injury, he or she will likely perform several physical exam maneuvers. These include:

  • Testing the patient’s hearing and vision to see if these parts of the brain have been damaged.
  • Testing the patient’s reflexes to see if there has been any nerve damage.
  • Using some basic recall tests to examine the patient’s cognitive function.

Finally, if the doctor is still worried about a brain injury, he or she can order imaging tests to look at the brain directly. There are two standard imaging scans that he or she might order:

  • CT Scan: A computed tomography (CT) scan can be thought of like an x-ray in three dimensions. The major benefit of a CT scan is that it is fast. This makes it perfect for emergency situations. However, it also uses a large amount of radiation and does not produce the same level of detail as an MRI.
  • MRI: A magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan uses powerful magnets to produce its image. The significant advantage of an MRI is that it provides a tremendous level of detail without using any radiation. Unfortunately, MRI scans take a long time to complete and are very expensive.

Based on the results of diagnostic imaging, the doctor can diagnose an individual with one of several types of traumatic brain injuries.

Types of Traumatic Brain Injuries

The doctor can diagnose someone with one of several different types of brain injuries. Like other injuries, some diagnoses are more severe than others; however, every kind of head injury needs to be taken seriously. Some of the possible head injuries include:

  • Concussion: A concussion can range markedly in its scope and severity. In general, a doctor will diagnose a concussion when a blow to the head has caused a temporary alteration in the function of the brain. A concussion typically does not show any abnormalities on imaging scans; however, the individual can still lose consciousness temporarily. While some people might recover from a concussion relatively quickly, repeated concussions can lead to severe medical conditions such as chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).
  • Cerebral Contusion: A cerebral contusion can be thought of like a bruise of the brain tissue. Typically, if someone has been diagnosed with a cerebral contusion, a bruise will be evident in medical imaging. The symptoms of a brain contusion will depend on the location and severity of the contusion within the brain. While some people have issues with memory, other people can have problems with executive functioning. This means that the person might have trouble following directions. Many people will recover fully following a cerebral contusion.
  • Hemorrhage: A hemorrhage is a severe head injury. This term is used to describe bleeding that has developed in the brain. A hemorrhage can develop following a major blow to the head, such as those sustained in a motorcycle accident. A tear in any of the arteries or veins can lead to rapid bleeding inside the skull, leading to devastating consequences. Fortunately, an intracranial hemorrhage will typically show up on a CT scan. Depending on the size and location of the bleed, the individual may need emergency surgery.
  • Herniation: A herniation is among the most severe head injuries and can lead to death. A herniation can develop as a consequence of any of the injuries above. A herniation takes place when the pressure inside the skull forces the brain tissue to shift. When this happens, the brain tissue is unable to function. As a result, patients can stop breathing, leading to death.
Traumatic Brain Injury Treatment

Once the diagnosis has been made, the treatment process will begin. The doctor will use medications to control the patient's blood pressure and reduce pain. The physician may also administer IV fluids or use a blood transfusion to provide additional support. In some cases, surgery is required to stabilize the patient's vital signs.

When patients leave the hospital, the recovery process will probably involve physical and occupational therapy. This is used to help individuals regain as much of their motor and sensory function as possible. During this challenging time, individuals need to lean on family members and friends for support. There are always resources available.

Watch YouTube Video: Can Someone Fully Recover from Traumatic Brain Injury? The video below provides some insights on whether someone can recover from a traumatic brain injury.

South Lake Tahoe Brain Injury Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, an South Lake Tahoe Brain Injury Attorney. Following a severe accident, someone can be diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury. If a loved one has developed a traumatic brain injury following an accident, please call me today at (530) 392-9400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly and no-obligation advice.

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