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Determining the severity of a brain injury

Traumatic brain injuries can be particularly serious. Whether they're caused by sports accidents or car crashes, these injuries can have lifelong effects requiring permanent medical care. However, it's important to note that TBIs can range from mild to severe. There are a number of ways in which California physicians determine the severity of a particular TBI.

Moderate brain injuries tend to result from a loss of consciousness that was 20 minutes or greater but less than six hours, with a Glasgow Coma Scale of 9 to 12. On the other hand, severe TBIs result from losing consciousness for more than 6 hours, with a Glasgow Coma Scale of 3 to 8. Both moderate and severe brain injuries can have permanent neurobiological effects, however. The effects of such an injury can vary based on the rate of recovery, the functions affected, the resources available for treatment, the functions not affected by TBI and the severity of the initial incident.

Some of the cognitive deficits that can arise after a moderate to severe brain injury include problems with memory, processing speed, confusion, concentration and attention. Victims may become more impulsive, have problems processing a spoken or written language or struggle with executive functioning. In some cases, people may be unable to understand speech or produce the sounds to speak themselves. Vision and hearing loss or reduced acuity can also commonly follow a brain injury.

When a brain injury is caused due to someone else's negligent or deliberate behavior, it is possible to seek accountability and compensation. Someone who has suffered a TBI can work with a personal injury lawyer to pursue those responsible for their damages.

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