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Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Should Not Begin or End in March

 March 27, 2019

By  Deborah L Weiner Katz, OTR/L, CCM, CLCP

It is somewhat unusual to assign months for awareness of subjects that deserve awareness year-round. March is TBI Awareness month, which brings awareness to traumatic brain injuries. Recently, we posted a blog about how scientists are now able to recreate traumatic brain injury in order to learn about recovery. We’ve discussed how to avoid obesity while treating TBI, warned against ignoring brain injuries caused by domestic violence and reviewed all matters related to children and TBI. Clearly, at AdvancedRM, TBI Awareness month can be any month!! Scroll through our blog for more TBI-related posts.

Still, March of 2019 has rolled around, and there is still room for improvement when it comes to understanding how brain injuries occur. We can still do better to protect brain injury survivors. Shockingly enough, we find that much of the lack of awareness lies among the medical community itself! It is not uncommon for traumatic brain injuries to be overlooked in the emergency room or ignored by family doctors. Considering the correlation between car accidents and brain injuries, our community also has an obligation to educate the legal community. Personal injury lawyers need to be able to identify and serve brain injury survivors.


Though it is common to go with bullet points when rattling off statistics, we’d rather not in this case. These numbers are far too important to simply scroll through or skim over. That would do a great injustice to the 280,000 people hospitalized, or the 50,000 who die from TBIs, annually, in the United States.

The number of Americans who sustain TBIs annually is 2.5 million. Out of that group, 2.2 million are treated in ERs or Trauma Centers. In just one day, 137 Americans die because of a TBI-related injury. More than 14% of these TBIs are caused by motor accidents.


The same goes for symptoms. It is a long list, but we’d rather not list them. An extended loss of consciousness, or a coma, can be the result of a TBI. A patient might suffer amnesia surrounding the traumatic event. At the same time, it can be something as simple as a headache. Other physical symptoms include dizziness, ringing in the ears, nausea or vomiting, hypersensitivity to light or sound and sleep disturbances. Close attention must be paid to other behavioral abnormalities, such as confusion, slurred speech, emotional instability and delayed response to questions.


AdvancedRM is part of a larger community that pursues knowledge and supports this cause year-round. The Brain Injury Association of America is a hugely influential sister organization. We share their vision that everyone in the U.S. who sustains a brain injury is diagnosed, treated and accepted. We also greatly admire their mission, which is to advance awareness, research, treatment, and education and to improve the quality of life for all people affected by brain injury.


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