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Archive for brain-injury

Recovering from a Traumatic Brain Injury

When you or a loved one suffers a traumatic brain injury, you are in it for the long haul. In the week’s following a traumatic brain injury, bleeding, swelling and changes in brain chemistry can affect the way that a healthy brain functions. The person who has been injured may be unable to open their eyes, and that person may not show any signs that they are aware of their surroundings.

Once the swelling in the brain begins to subside and brain chemistry improves, function improves as well. In time, the injured person’s eyes may open, they may be able to follow simple commands, and a sleep-wake cycle often begins. In the best cases, these patients regain the ability to speak and interact with family members. During the early stages of recovery, medical professionals may use several terms. These include:

Coma: The patient is unconscious and does not respond to various forms of stimuli. The injured person is not able to communicate and does display emotional responses.

Vegetative State: A person who is described as being in a vegetative state has sleep-wake cycles. They also startle and can briefly orient themselves to visual stimuli and sound.

Minimally Conscious State: A patient is described as being minimally conscious when they are able to display an understanding of where sights and sounds are coming from. They may reach for objects, respond to commands, vocalize and show emotion.

When a person suffers a traumatic brain injury, they may display confusion and disorientation. Their ability to maintain attention is affected, and they may display nervousness, anxiety, restlessness or frustration. Their sleep patterns may be negatively affected, and they can become increasingly sensitive to stimuli and physically aggressive. This stage is often the most stressful for families as they watch a person they love behave in ways that they did not before the injury.

People who suffer with traumatic brain injuries are often inconsistent.

Understanding Brain Injuries Due to Sports

Whether you have children who play sports or play sports yourself, injury is most likely to be tops on the list of your concerns. People are injured frequently while playing sports and, while some injuries are minor, some can have lifelong consequences. When it comes to sports injuries, those involving the brain are often the most traumatic.

One of the most common brain injuries associated with sports play is a concussion. A concussion is not technically an injury itself, although it is used to describe one. It is, essentially, the act that causes a traumatic injury to the brain. The word concussion describes the movement of excessive movement of the brain within the skull. Understanding this common injury can help you prevent it and in the event that one occurs, treat it.

What Happens to the Brain?

The brain is an organ inside the skull that essentially floats in cerebral spinal fluid. This fluid acts like the shock absorbers do in your car. As you move, jump or run, your brain moves slightly. The fluid acts as a cushion, protecting your brain from hitting your skull.

During a concussion, the brain move rapidly in such a way that the fluid is unable to absorb all of the shock. The brain hits the front or back of the skull or bounces between both. A direct blow to the head or a whiplash type motion are the most common causes of a concussion injury.

For example, you are playing football and are hit hard from behind. Your neck and head are thrown forward and your brain hits the back of your skull. Your head stops quickly or bounces back, and your brain hits the front of your skull.

The second most common cause for concussion is a rotational injury. In other words, your head rapidly rotates. This can cause straining or shearing of the brain tissue.

Does Age Matter?

Age definitely matters

The Future of Medicine is Closer Than You Think

Each year in the United States, approximately 50,000 people lose their lives to traumatic brain injury. From bullets to blood clots, these types of injuries cause severe damage in the brain that can prove to be fatal if not attended to promptly. In order to treat a patient in the appropriate manner, doctors need to be able to monitor the pressure in the brain. Unfortunately, the tools currently used to monitor patients are large and need to be removed once the patient is deemed to be recovered.

In a search for a better tool, Doctor Rory Murphy, a neurosurgeon, developed a dissolvable sensor. Together with a team of engineers, Murphy has made a sensor that is thinner than the tip of a needle. Maybe more importantly, the sensor can be left in the brain, taking readings over days, and dissolves on its own. It quite simply never needs to be removed from the body because the body absorbs it.

The pressure sensor is made from a membrane made of material that is typically used in medical devices and suspended within a frame of magnesium and silicone. The fluid that surrounds the sensor after it is inserted into the human body causes the membrane to bend. This, in turn, changes the resistance of the silicon sensor. After a few days’ time, the wrapping of the sensor dissolves and the tiny mechanism is absorbed by the body.

Tests in rats have gone well, and the team is planning on testing the sensor in pigs next. If the sensors continue to do well in tests, the team plans to begin human trials in three to five years. In the meantime, the team will continue to make improvements to the device, including the power and connectivity of the sensors. The team also wants to develop a sensor that can last in the body beyond a few days. The goal is for a sensor

Do Not Ignore Signs of a Traumatic Brain Injury

Car accident are stressful when they do not result in injury. Add injury into the mix and the event can turn downright nightmarish. When you or a family member are struck in the head, the first concern needs to be a traumatic brain injury.

There are several symptoms of a traumatic brain injury to be on the lookout for. The symptoms range from mild to severe, making it easy to confuse a traumatic brain injury with another type of injury. Physical symptoms include:

Loss of consciousness. If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident and lose consciousness, no matter how quickly, get medical attention immediately. Confusion. You may not lose consciousness, but you may have feelings of confusion or disorientation. Headache. You may experience a headache in any part of your head. Do not assume that a headache must be in a particular area of your head to indicate a traumatic brain injury. Drowsiness. There is a difference between being tired from a lack of sleep and having a steady feeling of drowsiness. Coordination. If you find yourself losing your balance frequently when it doesn’t make sense to do so, you should be checked out by your doctor. There is a difference between tripping over something laying in the middle of the floor and constantly tripping over your own feet. Non-physical signs. You may experience sensory symptoms such as blurred vision, a bad taste in your mouth, ringing in the ears, sensitivity to light and sound. You may also have memory problems, mood changes, or a feeling of anxiety.

If you experience any of these symptoms following a car accident, it is important that you seek medical attention immediately. Ignoring a brain injury can make it worse, and it can make it far more difficult for doctors to offer you any form of effective treatment.

If you or a loved one has been involved

Recovering from a Traumatic Brain Injury

When you are diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury following a car accident, you will undoubtedly receive treatment from a medical professional. You will hear many terms that you may or may not understand. When it comes to your recovery, it is important that you understand the stages of your recovery or that of your family member. Traumatic brain injury recovery is often tracked using the Rancho Los Amigos Scale. Here is a breakdown.

Level I (No Response): The person who has suffered the injury is in a deep coma. The patient does not respond to stimuli.

Level II (Generalized Response): The patient is asleep the majority of the time but does experience periods of wakefulness. Movements tend to be reflexive.

Level III (Localized Response): The patient can remain alert for longer periods of time. They react to commands but are not consistent. Reactions are appropriate to stimuli.

Level IV (Confused and Agitated): Awareness increases, but so does a feeling of confusion. The patient may react with verbal or physical abuse, they may be easily agitated, and they may lack an attention span required for tasks presented.

Level V (Confused, Not Agitated): The patient can follow simple commands regularly. The long-term memory is returning, and the patient can carry out tasks that have been over-learned (eating, dressing, etc.).

Level VI (Confused, Appropriate): Goal-oriented behavior is displayed, but the person still needs verbal or physical direction. The patient understands that they have deficits. The patient can learn new skills and retain them from one occasion to the next.

Level VII (Automatic, Appropriate): Daily routines are performed automatically. The patient is able to learn new skills. Problem-solving and judgment are still impaired.

Level VIII (Purposeful, Appropriate): The patient is able to return to community as a functioning member. The patient may have continued deficits in memory, emotional functions or social skills.

As you or a family member recovers from a traumatic

Feeling Alone After A Traumatic Brain Injury

After surviving a traumatic brain injury, it’s not unusual for survivors to feel alone. Despite having family and friends surrounding them, they feel isolated. Others find that contact with friends and family s diminished. If you have suffered a brain injury and find yourself feeling as if you are working through your recovery by yourself, one of these reasons may apply to you.

You have difficulty understanding what people are saying to you. You have communication problems that were not present prior to your injury. This new inability to communicate effectively may have you feeling frustrated and misunderstood.

You are self-conscious about physical injuries or reduced capabilities. You may find it more difficult to spend time with the people you care about because of the way you feel about yourself. You may worry that people will not accept you, or you may be nervous around others.

You are more irritable and quick to snap after your injury. You may be making an effort to stay away from the people you know for fear of hurting their feelings. The people you know may be avoiding you because they are worried about the things you may say or do.

You are frequently fatigued and your energy level is low. This is common after a traumatic brain injury. You may not have the energy to participate in the activities you used to enjoy. The people in your life may be worried about tiring you out by asking you to participate in outings or events.

You are still experiencing physical pain. This pain can make it hard to do things you once did. You may have physical limitations that you have not yet figured out how to work into your new life.

You are no longer social and it is difficult to meet new people. You may have stopped working, playing sports, or participating in community activities. This is where your social group is

Baseball Bat Attack in San Diego

SAN DIEGO, Cal. – An assault involving a baseball bat and a gun ended with shots fired, and a person with a gravely-serious wound.

What can only be called a brutal attack occurred in City Heights early Sunday morning. Officers were dispatched to Central Avenue shortly after 2:30 a.m., just one block south of University Avenue.

According to reports, the attack began with an 18-year-old man being attacked by three or four people with baseball bats. The young man was pursued by the subjects into the front yard of a home where people were having a social gathering.

The young man pleaded with the family for assistance and was permitted inside the home to hide. As the suspects with bats entered the front yard, one fired a handgun at the man, hitting an innocent bystander.

The 24-year-old victim is not expected to survive the bullet wound to his head. The man was rushed to Mercy Hospital where he has been listed in grave condition.

The San Diego Police Department is asking that anyone who has information regarding this attack call 619.531.2293. Tipsters can remain anonymous for their protection. If you have information that can lead to the arrest of these individuals, please call.

At Steinger, Iscoe & Greene, we represent people who have been afflicted with brain and/or spinal cord injuries. Both of these types of injury can be caused by incidents just like this one.

Signs of brain injury include:

 Headache Vision Changes Lethargy Weakness Nausea Fainting

Signs of spinal cord injury include:

Paralysis (Partial or Full) Headache Weakness Loss of Sensation Changes in Motor Function

Brain and spinal cord injuries range from mild to severe, some may even result in death. If you have been hit in the head or back, your injuries are nothing to ignore. Even if you do not feel ill or injured, medical attention should be the first thing that you seek. Once you

Surprise Baby Tips the Scales in Florida

TAMPA, Fla. – Experiencing pregnancy is a joyful time for many new mothers. What happens, though, when you do not know that you are pregnant?

It sounds like fiction, but it is exactly what has just been experienced by Florida mother Maxxzandra Ford. According to Ford, who never had symptoms associated with pregnancy, she did not realize she was pregnant until she was close to her due date.

Visiting the doctor due to what Ford calls rapid weight gain, she was surprised to learn that she was pregnant. Not only was she expecting her third child, but she was more than 8 months along.

Ford, who is already the mother to a 5-year-old daughter and 1-year-old son, welcomed her new bundle of joy on January 29 at St. Joseph’s Women’s Hospital in Tampa. And what a bundle it was!

Avery Ford was born and quickly labeled as one of the largest children ever born in the state of Florida. What afforded him this dubious distinction? The fact that little…er…big Avery weighed in at 14.1 pounds directly after birth.

“I was cussing up a storm,” said Ford, describing her natural delivery to WFTS. “I was like, ‘Oh my goodness,’ and they were like ‘Stop pushing. Stop pushing.”

The baby, who was born with a full head of hair, is currently residing in the hospital’s neonatal unit. According to the doctor who is taking care of him, it is not uncommon for such large babies to experience health issues shortly after birth.

Larger infants may have difficulty passing through and emerging from the birth canal, resulting in problems with breathing, eating, and regulating blood sugars. Avery is as healthy as one would expect of such a large baby, and he is expected to be going home to live with his family soon.

If your child experienced brain injury due to traumatic birth or malpractice, contact the experienced, compassionate attorneys at Steinger, Iscoe

Does Education Affect Brain Injury Recovery?

Of all the injuries that we’ve seen our clients cope with, brain injuries are often among the most devastating and difficult to recover from. As the central organ that regulates thought, speech, memory, emotions and body coordination even a minor brain injury can have permanent consequences. Injuries as seemingly small as a concussion or bump on the head can change quality of life. In more severe cases, a brain injury can cause temporary or permanent amnesia, blackouts and seizures, and even a comatose state.

But the trouble with brain injuries is not just that they’re serious: it’s also that they’re hard to recover from. Even with the best medical science available, a doctor may not be able to give a patient any clear idea of when or if they will recover their full cognitive abilities. Treatments are often hit-and-miss.

That’s what makes a new study in Neurology particular promising. The study followed the outcomes of patients with head injuries, and noticed an important trend: those who have more “cognitive reserve” have better outcomes.

What is cognitive reserve? It’s a sort of buffed up level of mental dexterity that comes from lots of mental engagement, like reading books or going to school. Cognitive reserve is sort of the brain equivalent of going to the gym all the time. It represents a stronger brain that can take on more strain and bounce back from it better. The study

suggests that that includes better recovery from serious brain injuries.

Unfortunately, these results have been distorted in the media, which has focused on education. Going to school is indeed one way to build up cognitive reserve, with more years of schooling translating to more reserve. But it’s not the only way: sudoku, social engagement, reading and writing, and even learning a new language are all ways to get that much-needed reserve. And the advantages of these other methods is that they can be

Florida Legal Help after a Brain Injury

Before his accident, Casey was a popular kid. He was a swimming champion in his high school, putting in long hours of training that resulted in wins at meets – and some impressive muscles. On top of the swim team, he kept his grades up so well that his parents allowed him to enter a drag race at Palm Beach International Raceway.

It was his last sporting event.

Casey’s car didn’t stop at the finish line, instead crashing into a row of tires in a gravel pit. The force of the impact took a serious toll on his brain, forever changing his life according to The Palm Beach Post.

What happened to Casey is just one of many brain injuries that happen in Florida every year. Most are caused by car accidents. Victims of any kind of accident should seek legal help to get compensation, but when brain injury is involved there are extra obstacles:

The victim of a brain injury is often unable to make independent decisions. It can be hard for relatives to know what’s best to do for them, or to find the energy to pursue a legal case. A traumatic brain injury is generally life-altering. The emotional cost on both the victim, and their family, is tremendous – something that no amount of money can make up for.

At Steinger, Iscoe & Greene we routinely walk families through their legal options after a brain injury is endured by a loved one. Money can’t replace what was lost, but we know that the medical costs of a brain injury are among the highest bills most families will ever see. In some cases, brain surgery and rehabilitation are more expensive than a new home.

The results of a brain injury can be far more than pain and lost time or money – it can often involve the loss of crucial aspects of a loved one’s personality, or their