Perhaps the most traumatic of all injuries that someone involved in a car accident will have to contend with is damage to the brain. This is a life-altering injury that has serious effects on both the person who suffers the damage, and their extended family. A Portland brain injury attorney is often called upon in court to quantify the enormous hardship such injuries cause, and now a new study has shown that brain injuries can have an even greater negative impact than was previously thought.
People who have suffered traumatic brain injuries already have enough to contend with, but UCLA life scientists have now also shown the link between brain injuries and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can create an even greater hardship on victims than has ever been known before. The study, which was published on Feb. 15, suggests that people with even relatively mild brain injuries are more likely to develop anxiety disorders. These people should take every precaution to avoid stressful situations for an extended period of time.
Relationship Between PTSD and Brain Injury May Be Incidental
The study used to reach the conclusions was done using rats that experienced a concussive brain trauma and were then exposed to fear techniques two days after the initial injury. The study found that the rats who were injured showed far more fear than those who did not receive brain injuries, but the scientists can’t explain why this is so.
“Something about the brain injury rendered them more susceptible to acquiring an inappropriately strong fear,” said Michael Fanselow, the senior author of the study and professor of psychology at UCLA. “It was as if the injury primed the brain for learning to be afraid,” he said, then admitted that the reasons for the correlation between the brain injury and fear were unknown.
Fanselow hypothesized that the mere events that cause brain injury are also very frightening, so that the link between the injury itself and the PTSD are merely incidental.
If a motorcyclist, pedestrian or motorist is badly injured in Oregon, a Portland brain injury attorney will now have to consider what the negative impact on the victim’s quality of life will be if they also develop PTSD. Will this impact on their ability to do their job? Will it require ongoing and expensive psychological treatment? How will it affect their family? All these things will have to be taken into consideration.
This Study Could Help Oregon Brain Injury Victims
The results of this study could explain a lot about why people who have received even a mild brain injury suddenly experience unreasonable fear and stress long after the accident. Ever since the publication of the study, the advice going out is that victims should see legal help. Even people who have just experienced mild concussion or have merely banged their head on the dashboard should, without fail, seek both medical help and legal advice, and sooner rather than later.
The newly-published research will help attorneys to prepare lawsuits on behalf of their injured clients, some of whom may require a lifetime of care and therapy, and particularly if that injury leads to PTSD. The negative impact such injuries has on the victim’s family will also be easier to explain and quantify, thanks to the new study.
Before the study was released, insurance companies, by and large, would not cover the costs of ongoing treatment of someone who has suffered a traumatic brain injury and certainly not someone who develops PTSD. Armed with this new knowledge, however, a Portland brain injury attorney will be better able to challenge the insurer’s historical reluctance to look after victims.
Brain Injury Sufferers May Need Legal Help to Cover Costs
Suffering a brain injury in a car accident is bad enough. Medical costs can stretch a family’s resources to breaking point. In addition, many people have reported violent mood swings after such injuries, which have had devastating effects on their quality of life and that of their families.
Until the publication of the UCLA study, the reasons for these mood swings or fear of leaving the house were largely unexplained. Now that a light has been shone on the potential after-effects of traumatic brain injuries, there’s a chance that victims may at long last get the help they and their families so desperately need.
If you’ve been in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, and you’ve received even what you may consider to be a “little bang on the head,” it’s crucially important that you get immediate medical attention. Then, as soon as you’ve done that, you should immediately contact a competent Portland brain injury attorney and explain to them what you’ve been through.
Don’t be embarrassed to talk about your fears and mood swings. It’s now scientifically proven that your injury may also have resulted in the development of PTSD. If that is the case, your Portland brain injury attorney will guide you through the process of getting the help you need and the compensation you deserve.