Last week I attended the Brain Injury Alliance of Oregon's annual Conference. It was fascinating to hear about the current state of the medical science from medical experts. Most of the speakers addressed some of the misconceptions about brain injuries. Many of these misconceptions affect people injured in car crashes and other accidents. Brain injuries can be called various names depending on who you talk to. Concussions, Traumatic Brain Injuries, TBI, Mild Traumatic Brain Injuries, Mild TBI, MTbi, post-concussive syndrome are all various names for brain injuries. These brain injuries are very common in car crashes. Concussions and Mild TBI can occur in low speed rear-end collisions.
Myth 1: You must Lose Consciousness to have a Mild Traumatic Brain Injury (MTBI). According to the CDC and the recent medical literature, this is flat out wrong. A person need not lose consciousness, get "knocked out," or "black out" to have suffered a concussion. The CDC notes, "[M]ost concussions do not result in a loss of consciousness. Not being able to remember events (amnesia) prior to, or following the injury, for a period of time is another sign of a concussion. Yet, some people simply feel dazed or confused."
Myth 2: X-Rays, MRIs, and CT Scans Always Show a Mild Traumatic Brain Injury. According to medical literature, this is also FALSE. That is why many medical providers at the emergency room will not order medical imaging for people who exhibit post-concussive syndrome or Mild TBI symptoms after a motor vehicle crash. There are various medical tests that can be administered to diagnose a concussion and MTBI, but imaging is not reliable enough to diagnose many mild TBIs. Click here for more information.
Myth 3: Mild TBI Symptoms or Concussion Symptoms Appear Right After the Car Crash: According to the Mayo Clinic, concussion symptoms may be delayed for hours or days after the injury. This means that you can be in a car crash on Monday and your concussion symptoms may not appear until Friday.
Myth 4: You Must Hit Your Head to Have a Concussion or Mild TBI: According to the CDC's definition of a concussion/mild traumatic brain injury this is also FALSE. The CDC affirms, "A concussion is a mild form of traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head." The "jolt to the head" portion of the definition affirms that a person does not need to strike their head, but only needs to have their head jolted. This "jolt" is very common in car crashes. Especially in rear-end collisions.
Myth 5: Insurance Companies Are Aware of the Above Myths and Will Compensate You for Your Crash Caused Concussion: This is flat out false. I have witnessed Insurance companies use the concussion myths at trial and during settlement negotiations. Specifically, Insurance companies use outdated science and medicine to try and convince people that they could not have had a crash caused concussion or MTBI if they did not lose consciousness. Insurance companies will also claim that a person could not have a concussion if they did not hit their head in the crash.
Insurance Companies will assert that because there is no Medical Imaging showing a Concussion or Mild TBI then it did not occur. Insurance companies often use hired guns that are neuropsychologist to claim the person has a psychological issue that is causing the symptoms, and the symptoms are not related to the crash. In short, they will claim a car crash victim with a Mild TBI is either malingering or suffering from a psychiatric condition causing the symptoms. This is why it is imperative for you to consult with a personal injury lawyer if you have a concussion or mild TBI and are involved in a motor vehicle crash.
Please call Jeremiah Ross at Ross Law PDX at 503.224.1658 for your free case evaluation. Jeremiah Ross has experience with Traumatic Brain Injury Cases and Mild TBI/Concussion cases and will do his best to fight to get you full compensation for your crash caused injuries. Please remember to CONSULT WITH A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL if you think you have a head injury or any other medical condition. This post is for informational purposes only. The definitions and medical science are constantly evolving so please keep that in mind.