This article was published on November 14th, 2018
According to Headway – the brain injury association there are approximately 1 million people who visit A&E following a head injury each year in the UK.
Whilst some of these head injuries will show physical signs of their seriousness, for example, they may be unconscious, some may only appear to be minor head injuries.
However, whilst a small knock to the head may not seem too serious to some, any injury to the head can have very serious consequences and if a person suffers any type of head injury, whether they be a child or adult, they should be monitored closely for signs of more serious underlying symptoms of a brain injury.
Our Catastrophic Injury team have a developed a particular expertise in handling brain injury claims and helping our clients secure the rehabilitative treatment and financial compensation they deserve.
That is why, in this article, we discuss some of the symptoms that may show that a minor head injury may be more serious in nature, as well as what steps you should take if you discover that you have any of said symptoms.
While minor head injuries may cause a bump to appear under the skin or a small amount of bruising to the area of the head that was struck, the brain is a delicate organ and can be very vulnerable and there are some symptoms which may appear harmless but are in fact very dangerous.
Some people who suffer a brain injury may not show visible signs of damage for up to 48 hours, however, if you experience any of the symptoms outlined below, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.
Even if there are no cuts or bruises after an individual suffers a blow to the head, if they lose consciousness at any stage no matter how short that period of time may be, it could be a sign of a brain injury and should be investigated by a medical professional immediately.
If necessary an ambulance should be called, as paramedics will take the correct precautions when moving the person who has suffered the blow to the head, and these precautions may play a vital role in restricting further damage to other areas of the body that may have been impacted by the blow to the head, such as the neck or spine.
In the aftermath of the head injury, if the person who suffered the blow to the head struggles to find the words they want to say, or if their speech is slurred then this could be a sign of a serious brain injury. Slurred speech may be a side-effect of a traumatic brain injury as TBIs can often affect the muscles that the body uses to control both a person’s voice and speech.
A person who has suffered a serious brain injury may also struggle to understand the speech of other people and may become uncharacteristically aggravated as a result.
Some common symptoms that can be slightly delayed in revealing themselves after a blow to the head include headaches, vomiting and other changes to the body.
For example, the person who has suffered a head injury may experience general weakness throughout the body, as we have mentioned this can have an effect on speech, but it can have other effects on the body including an inability to balance properly both when stationary and when moving.
A minor head injury could develop into a serious brain injury and as a result, the senses can be affected.
Those who suffer acquired brain injuries can often experience changes to their eyesight including blurred vision, double vision, dark spots in their line of sight or ‘stars’ in their eyes.
They can also experience a partial or complete loss of their sense of taste.
Numbness or sensitivity can also develop post-injury, and this could be a sign that an individual has suffered an injury to the area of the brain that controls the nervous system that controls their sense of touch.
Even with what may seem a small knock to the head, the possibility of fainting and seizures is very real. If you or the individual who has suffered a head injury begins to experience a clear liquid emerging from the nose or ears, then this is a sign of a serious brain injury and it is essential that a specialist doctor is consulted immediately. Likewise the same applies should blood come from the ears.
If you have suffered a head injury, staff in the A&E department should aim to check anyone with a head injury within the first 15 minutes of their arrival at the hospital.
Depending on the initial diagnosis and symptoms displayed by the patient, the medical staff will then decide what steps must be taken next and these can vary depending on the severity of the head injury and whether they need further assistance in the form of X-rays or scans to establish whether the patient has suffered a brain injury or not.
If a minor head injury has developed into a brain injury then once it has been diagnosed by a medical professional, they will prescribe a course of treatment
As a result of our extensive experience in handling brain injury claims, we also recognise the importance of rehabilitation in the aftermath of suffering a brain injury.
Our team work with the best medical professionals and brain injury charities including Headway, BIRT and BASIC in order to assist our clients and their loved ones adjust to life after their brain injury.
Having a specialist brain injury solicitor representing you during your claim is essential. This particular area of law can often be complex and requires a solicitor who not only aims to secure you the financial compensation you deserve but also places a key focus on obtaining the best possible medical treatment to assist you in your recovery.
Our Catastrophic Injury team is nationally renowned and understand that brain injuries can have lasting, life-changing consequences for both the victim and their loved ones.
We don’t just prioritise getting the highest possible compensation settlement for your claim, we also ensure you get the best possible rehabilitative treatment and that your recovery continues long after your claim is settled.
Coming to terms with a brain injury is often one of the biggest challenges that victims and their families can face, therefore, where appropriate, we ensure that each client has a dedicated case manager. The role of the case manager is to ensure they understand what the client’s needs are, both physically and emotionally.
If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury and would like to discuss a potential claim, our team are here for you every step of the way.
Get in touch with our Serious Injury team by completing our online enquiry form, or calling us for free on 0800 1979 345.