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Recovering from a brain injury

Suffering an injury in an accident is a terrifying event. Following an accident, many questions are probably running through your mind. How serious is the injury? Will it be expensive to treat? How long will it take to recover? Will I recover from it? For those suffering a head trauma, the list of questions is likely endless. Traumatic brain injury victims in West Virginia often think about the recovery process and how it will impact them in the long-term.

The brain injury recovery process will not be the same for any two victims. The brain is a major organ and is very sensitive to trauma and any type of injury whether the injury is closed or open. And, while there is no set recovery process, there are common stages. Typically, the first few weeks after a TBI, swelling, bleeding or changes in brain chemistry will often impact the function of a victim's healthy brain tissue. In some cases, an injured victim may keep their eyes closed and even show few or no signs of awareness.

As the swelling decreases and blood flow and brain chemistry of the victim improves, brain function usually also improves. And with time, a victim may open their eyes, develop sleep-wake cycles again and even follow commands, respond to family members and even speak. The early stages of severe TBI's typically include coma, vegetative state and minimally conscious state.

The fastest improvement for TBI sufferers usually occurs in the first six months after the injury. During this time, victims will likely show many improvements and will steadily get better. Recovery usually takes six months to two years for TBI victims. And, while a victim might have mostly recovered from the injury, there is still a chance that they could suffer long-term impacts to their memory, learning capabilities and cognitive thinking.

A TBI means that a victim will most likely require a lengthy recovery process that requires much medical treatment, rehabilitation and possibly surgery. Because of that, if a negligent party was responsible for the serious accident that led to a brain injury, it is possible for victims to take action. A personal injury claim could hold a negligent party liable, helping the injured victim recover compensation for their losses and damages.

Source:, "Understanding TBI: Part 3 - The Recovery Process," Thomas Novack and Tamara Bushnik, accessed Nov. 27, 2016

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