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Mild brain injuries caused by car accidents

If a Rhode Island driver becomes involved in a car accident, there is a chance that the person could suffer a mild brain injury. However, the term "mild" only refers to the initial physical injury that the brain suffers; the wide range of symptoms and challenges that someone who suffered a mild brain injury can range from temporary dizziness to permanent changes in mood and behavior.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines minor brain injuries as an injury suffered to the head that was caused by acceleration forces, deceleration forces or blunt force trauma. The symptoms of this type of injury often include self-reported episodes of dizziness, confusion or amnesia. Additionally, a person with a brain injury may experience seizures, fatigue, be unable to concentrate and may lose consciousness.

When a moving vehicle suddenly collides with another vehicle or a non-moving object, the sudden deceleration force can cause the brain collide with the inside of the skull. This can cause serious damage to the brain tissue and injure or kill neural cells. If the neural cells are damaged or die, the injured person may have problems with their balance, eyesight and changes in their behavior. While some of the damages may be permanent, the brain may recover to some extent with rehabilitation.

Even a minor brain injury that was caused by a car accident can require a long recovery period. If the other driver was found to be liable for the crash, the injured person could potentially file a personal injury lawsuit against the liable driver. The lawsuit allows the injured person to seek compensation for the damages they sustained that were associated with the injury; for example, they may seek compensation for the cost of a rehabilitation program and lost income.

Source: Brain Injury Association of America, "Mild Brain Injury and Concussion", December 29, 2014

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