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Auto Accidents One Major Cause of Traumatic Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are some of the nation's most prevalent injuries; in fact, more people suffer a TBI each year than do a heart attack. At least 1.4 million TBIs occur annually. Not surprisingly, automobile accidents are one of the leading causes of TBIs, especially severe brain injuries that can take years to heal.

Kim Valentini was a confident woman who loved to ski and dance before a car accident left her with a severe traumatic brain injury. After half a month in a coma and more than a de cade later, Valentini still suffers the effects of her TBI. Her short term memory remains spotty, and Valentini relies on her extensive note system to help remind her of life's most mundane details.

Unfortunately, Valentini is only one of many auto accident victims that suffer the effects of TBI, which can range from mild to severe. Mild TBIs include sports concussions and other bumps or jolts to the head, while more severe TBIs may arise from blows to the head or piercing of the skull. Auto accidents are the reason behind almost half of all severe TBIs in America, and account for almost 30 percent of all TBIs.

According to the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke, severe TBIs have a number of symptoms, including headache, nausea, behavioral or mood changes, seizures and numbness of extremities, in addition to the obvious trauma that may occur from a blow to the head or penetration of the skull. Half of all TBI victims will need surgery to remove or repair hematomas or other complications from the TBI, and long-term disabilities like Kim Valentini's memory loss may make holding a job or other daily tasks difficult.

Fortunately, car drivers and passengers can reduce the effect of a potential TBI. First and foremost, always wear a seatbelt, since seatbelts prevent the body from being whipped around or displaced. Using height and weight-appropriate restraints for children is also important.

Traumatic brain injuries can have lifetime effects. Unfortunately, car accidents are a leading cause of TBIs. If you or a loved one have fallen victim to a TBI due to an auto accident, please contact an experienced personal injury attorney.

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