The Center for Disease Control (CDC) recently released new data on traumatic brain injuries in the United States. This new information comes as the CDC updates its in-depth 2004 survey of brain injury in the United States with a new report, titled “Traumatic Brain Injury in the United States: Emergency Department Visits, Hospitalization, and Death.” These new data paint an alarming picture of the rapid rise of traumatic brain injury, or TBI. The Illinois brain injury attorneys at Passen & Powell believe that brain injuries are a rapidly mounting problem that our society must address. Indeed, during the study period TBI was a factor in nearly a third (30.5%) of all injury-related deaths.
According to the CDC, since 2004 traumatic brain injuries have increased by 21% in the U.S. The U.S. population, however, has only grown by only 6.3% over that same time period. The rate of increase of TBIs has thus outstripped population growth by an astounding amount – a factor of three. For a free consultation with a top Chicago traumatic brain injury lawyer, call us at (312) 527-4500.
Much of this increase is attributable to several key demographics. First, there has been a marked increase in TBI among adults 75 and older, as that portion of the population is susceptible to TBI and continues to increase. Traumatic brain injuries from falls, the highest cause of TBI overall, was also extremely high in this portion of the population. The CDC has been carefully monitoring the increase in fall-related injuries in this portion of the population, and believes that many of these falls are preventable. The CDC recommends exercise to increase agility, health checks, and home safety evaluations as among the steps that can reduce falls, and the corresponding traumatic brain injuries, among the elderly.
The second group showing an increase in traumatic brain injuries was the young, including both young children (4 years and under) and adolescents (15 to 19 years old). The CDC attributes this increase in part to the increased participation of America’s youth in sports. As to young children, much like the elderly, falls were a particularly frequent cause of TBI. It is critically important for infants and children to seek medical attention if there has been head trauma or potential brain damage, because a child’s brain continues to develop into adulthood.
Other than falls, the single most common cause of traumatic brain injury is motor vehicle accidents, including tractor-trailer truck crashes, which account for 17.3% of all traumatic brain injuries in the United States. Furthermore, motor vehicle accidents have a much higher death rate than falls, accounting for 31.8% of all TBI deaths. The car and trucking accident attorneys of Passen & Powell know all too well the devastation that motor vehicle accident-induced TBI can cause. If you or someone you love sustained a traumatic brain injury in an automobile accident as a result of another driver’s negligence, you may have a legal claim. Our Chicago accident lawyers can help you to analyze your particular case and determine whether to seek relief in court.
Still, the CDC’s report also contained encouraging data. For example, the CDC attributed much of the rise in reports of TBI among young children and adolescents, in particular, to heightened public awareness. As parents and other adults become aware of the causes and symptoms of TBI, and recognize TBI as a treatable condition, emergency room visits have increased. And overall, around 80% of all traumatic brain injuries during the study period, although requiring treatment in an emergency room, did not require hospitalization. Perhaps most encouraging, although the number of traumatic brain injuries has increased dramatically, the amount of TBI-related deaths has not – suggesting that we are getting better at recognizing and treating TBI.
If you would like to learn more about TBI and its causes and treatment, please feel free to scroll back through the previous articles on this feed. Throughout the month of March, National Brain Injury Awareness Month, the Chicago brain injury lawyers of Passen & Powell explored brain injuries, including TBI, in depth. Our experienced attorneys have familiarity with the many forms of brain injury, and know how to analyze each brain injury case to ensure that victims get the compensation they deserve.
For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury and wrongful death lawyer at Passen & Powell, call us at (312) 527-4500.