What’s the Difference Between a Traumatic Brain Injury and an Acquired Brain Injury?

David Monteleone
Illinois Accident and Wrongful Death Lawyer

  Posted  |  Category : Personal Injury Attorney

Personal Injury AttorneyBoth TBIs and ABIs often trigger extremely high medical bills. It’s not unusual for these expenses to exceed $100,000. If the victim’s health insurance company refuses to pay these costs, as is occasionally the case, an attorney may be able to arrange for medical treatment at no upfront cost.

Even better, this medical treatment comes from professionals who know how to diagnose and treat brain injuries. Both these things are difficult. Many brain injury victims do not experience signature symptoms, like nausea and unconsciousness. Furthermore, brain injuries are always permanent. They are incurable, but they are treatable. Only highly experienced physicians know the difference.

A Rockford personal injury attorney does more than see to the victim’s immediate needs. Lawyers also fight for victims in court by obtaining compensation and justice they deserve. Sometimes these cases settle out of court.

Traumatic Brain Injuries

Generally, either a strong, sudden blow to the head or the cumulative effect of many smaller blows causes a Traumatic Brain Injury. Sports-related head injuries grab many headlines, probably because many sports leagues did little or nothing to protect participants in the face of rising evidence of danger.

However, motor vehicle crashes cause the vast majority of TBIs, mostly because these collisions combine all three TBI causes, which are:

  • Trauma: Even the most advanced safety restraint system can only absorb so much force. During car crashes, victims often hit their heads on solid objects. In high-speed crashes, small objects – like cell phones, become high-speed missiles.
  • Motion: Car crashes often cause whiplash. The victim’s head surges forward then snaps backward. As a result, the brain repeatedly slams against the inside of the skull. Whiplash also causes severe neck and shoulder injuries, especially to the nerves.
  • Noise: Most car crash witnesses say the noise sounded like an explosion. These sudden loud noises create shockwaves, which disrupt brain functions. Even a person like a nearby pedestrian could sustain a TBI from a car wreck.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a bit different. Emergency responders often develop this condition, so this issue often is seen in workers’ compensation cases. Exposure to extreme stress erodes the cerebral cortex. This part of the brain controls logical responses. When that erosion happens, the amygdala becomes too large. This part of the brain controls emotional responses. This imbalance explains PTSD symptoms like depression and heightened awareness.

Acquired Brain Injuries

Many medical conditions, especially cardiovascular conditions, cause ABIs. If the brain is deprived of oxygen for even a few moments, brain cells begin dying. Once these cells die, they never regenerate. Diabetes and epilepsy may also cause several acquired brain injuries.

Frequently, medical malpractice is the common denominator. For example, the misdiagnosis rate is alarmingly high, especially with chronic conditions. A delayed diagnosis often means a worse brain injury. Lack of communication also is often a problem. The average doctor listens to a patient for less than 10 seconds. During such brief interaction, it’s impossible to learn anything meaningful about the patient’s condition.

Sometimes, TBIs and ABIs overlap. That’s the case with things like drowning injuries and birth injuries, which result in cerebral palsy.

Reach Out to Tenacious Attorneys

Brain injury victims are entitled to compensation for their serious injuries. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Rockford, contact Fisk & Monteleone, Ltd.
Home and hospital visits are available.