Every nine seconds someone in the United States suffers a brain injury.
According to the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAUSA), at least 5.3 million Americans — one in 60 people — live with a traumatic brain injury-related disability.
Each year more than 3.6 million people sustain an acquired brain injury (ABI) and at least 2.8 million experience traumatic brain injuries (TBI).
“An acquired brain injury is a non-traumatic injury,” said neurologist Richard. J. Meagher, MD, FACS. “The brain damage is caused by internal factors such as lack of oxygen, exposure to toxins, or pressure from a tumor. A traumatic brain injury is caused by trauma to the brain from an external force.”
The BIAUSA reports that nearly half of all TBIs are caused by falls.
“Impact to the head, assault, auto accidents and sports injuries are also common causes of TBI,” said Dr. Meagher. “Many times, those who hit their head don’t bother getting treatment which can lead to further problems.”
While approximately 2.8 million TBIs are reported each year, there could be many more cases.
“There’s no way for us to know how many suffer injuries but don’t go to the doctor,” said Dr. Meagher. “So, the actual number of TBIs is unknown.”
Symptoms of brain injury include:
- Loss of consciousness
- Persistent headache
- Nausea or vomiting
- Dilation of one or both pupils
- Clear fluids draining from nose or ears
- Inability to awaken from sleep
If you experience any of the above symptoms, call Dr. Meagher at 856-336-9808 for a consultation.