Hospital emergency rooms treat an estimated 1,000,000 people with head injuries each year, and approximately 500,000 people die each year as a result of a traumatic head injury, reports the Dana Foundation, a brain research foundation. Head injuries involving bleeding in the brain may occur as a result of serious motor vehicle accidents, a condition which can have fatal consequences if not recognized and treated straightaway.
Warning: “Talk and Die” Syndrome
Brain hemorrhaging, or bleeding in the brain, is a type of traumatic head injury (TBI), the number one cause of which is motor vehicle accidents. Sometimes, after the impact of a car accident, a victim can appear “normal” with no pain or outward signs of head trauma, but he or she is actually hemorrhaging inside the skull. He or she may have a fracture and not even be aware of it.
Some victims can sustain a brain hemorrhage, a life-threatening injury, and no immediate outward symptoms will be visible. By the time the victim starts recognizing symptoms, it may be too late to stop the patient’s declining health; brain damage is often irreversible.
In a CNN interview, Dr. Carmelo Graffagnino, director of Duke Neurosciences Intensive Care Unit, explained: “A patient can appear so deceivingly normal at first, but they actually have a brain bleed and as the pressure builds up, they’ll experience classic symptoms of a traumatic brain injury.”
Doctors are calling this phenomenon the “talk and die” syndrome because the patient may feel fine after head trauma because of delayed bleeding between the skull and the brain system that regulates things like speech and consciousness. Thus, the injured party may often refuse medical treatment and delay possible life-saving measures.
One notable example of this was British actress Natasha Richardson, daughter of Vanessa Redgrave and wife of Liam Neeson, who suffered a ‘normal’ fall on a ski trip in 2009, refused an ambulance, and went back to her hotel room.
Subsequently, she had to be airlifted just an hour later to a hospital and passed away the following day.
Recognizing the Symptoms of a Brain Hemorrhage
Because of the danger of an unidentified brain hemorrhage injury, it’s crucial to stay alert to any symptoms. It can take up to three hours (and in some cases much longer) for symptoms to manifest.
Dr. Graffagnino went on to explain the complexities in recognizing brain injuries: “The brain is like Jell-O. Imagine if you dropped a bowl of Jell-O on the floor and it looks intact at first but when you examine it really close, you can see it has teeny tiny cracks all in it.”
Some of the symptoms that can alert victims and doctors of a brain hemorrhage include:
- abnormal vision;
- communication problems or difficulty reading and writing;
- loss of balance and coordination;
- hand tremors; and
- abnormal sense of taste or smell.
Legal Help after Serious Car Accidents
If someone else was responsible for an accident that caused you or your loved one serious injury like bleeding in the brain, you might be able to recover compensation for your losses.
Contact D.J. Banovitz for a free consultation at 303-300-5060. We can discuss the legal aspects of your accident and what types of compensation for which you may be eligible.