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Full effects of a traumatic brain injury are not immediately seen

There are injuries that are pretty straightforward. For example, a broken bone is easy to diagnose and treat, and a time line can be offered as to when a full recovery can be expected. A traumatic brain injury (TBI), on the other hand, is not that simple. Those residing in Arizona or elsewhere who are the victims of a TBI, or the victim's family members, may not fully see the effects of the damages for some time.

The brain is complex, to say the least. While damage suffered to certain areas of the brain can give an idea of what may be expected, it is impossible to say exactly how well a person will recover. Unfortunately only time will tell.

When it comes to a TBI, there are certain defined stages of healing. How long each stage takes depends on the person and the injury experienced. These stages include:

  • The initial damage: leading to swelling of the brain, bleeding and/or other complications.
  • The initial healing phase: minor improvements in function, reduced brain swelling.
  • A phase of disorientation: erratic and/or uncharacteristic behavior.
  • Later stages: gradual improvement of function and responses.

Some injuries may result in a person experiencing a coma, entering a vegetative state or becoming minimally conscious. The length of time in any of these states can help in determining how well a person will recover, but again, any time-frame given is an educated guess. For those who do come out of these states fully, improvements may seem fairly quick the first six months of recovery. After that, progression may seem to take longer.

A traumatic brain injury is likely to affect the victim and his or her family members for years -- if not the rest of their lives. These injuries can cause physical pain, emotional heartache and financial distress. Due to the significant toll a TBI can take on an individual and his or her loved ones, it may be possible to take legal action against the person or persons believed responsible in an effort to seek compensation. Personal injury claims may be filed in an Arizona civil court. Depending on the facts of the case, including the events and actions leading to an injury, monetary relief may be achieved through successful litigation and/or negotiation.

Source: msktc.org, "The Recovery Process For Traumatic Brain Injury", Thomas Novack and Tamara Bushnik, Accessed on June 13, 2015

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