I got a concussion in my accident. Do I have a case?

15% of people sustaining concussions in a car accident will develop severe, permanent symptoms. 

Within the last few years the prevalence, and potential severity of head injures has moved to the forefront of public awareness. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of concussions. FN1 The Mayo Clinic tells us that "[a] concussion is a traumatic brain injury that alters the way your brain functions. Effects are usually temporary, but can include problems with headache, concentration, memory, judgment, balance and coordination." It's generally agreed that a concussion is the most common, mildest, least severe form of brain injury. Beyond that, there is a lack of uniformity and consensus on concussions. There are, apparently, 16 different scales to measure the severity of concussions. FN2 The standard treatment for a concussion is "rest", and symptoms usually resolve within a matter of weeks. However, the CDC advises us that 15% of people sustaining concussions in a car accident will develop severe, permanent symptoms. F3 The modern trend is to refer to a concussion as a MTBI [mild traumatic brain injury]. If you follow professional sports, you know well know the controversy between the NFL and it former players.

The reality is undiagnosed concussions have likely been part of the personal injury landscape for years.

Increased awareness has helped, but the fact is that many cases of undiagnosed, and untreated, head trauma are still occurring every day. It's sound advice for any person involved in an automobile accident to have themselves cleared medically. The answer to the question posed by this article is an unqualified "yes". Absolutely. If you've sustained a concussion, follow the protocol set down by your doctor. Immediately contact you physician if you have any changes or worsening in your balance or vision, or develop a headache. A concussion is a serious injury to your head, and we are realizing the potential long term effects of one, an in particular, more than one such injury. If you've be diagnosed with concussion, you should consult with an experienced personal injury attorney. I extend a complimentary case analysis to all of my prospective clients. Contact me today to arrange yours. 

FN 1. Thurman D, The epidemiology and economics of head trauma. In: Miller L, Ayes R, editors. Head Trauma: Basic, Preclinical, and Clinical Directions. New York: John Wiley and Sons; 2001. pp. 327-47.

FN2.  Hayden MG, Jandial R, Duenas HA, Mahajan R, Levy M (2007). "Pediatric Concussions in Sports: A Simple and Rapid Assessment Tool for Concussive Injury in Children and Adults". Child's Nervous System 23 (4): 431–435. 

FN3.     [Heads Up: Facts for Physicians about Mild Traumatic Brain Injury, CDC].


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