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The personal and financial costs of a brain injury difficult to quantify

More than any other human organ, the brain is the most complex and vital of all. In addition to controlling every bodily process, different regions of the brain are also responsible for storing information and memories, controlling emotions and impulses and enabling an individual to think and speak. Given the numerous and important roles the organ fulfills, it's not surprising that an injury to the brain can have devastating and life-changing consequences.

According to The Center for Head Injury Services, an estimated 2 million people in the U.S. suffer brain injuries annually and approximately 88,000 people die. An injury to the brain may be deemed minor, like a concussion, to severe in nature. However, it's important to note that even individuals who suffer so-called minor brain injuries often experience negative symptoms that may last for days or even weeks.

Of those two million traumatic brain injuries, roughly 51 percent are tied to motor vehicle accidents and 21 percent to falls. Head and brain injuries are especially common among bicyclists who are involved in any type of motor vehicle-related accident and an estimated 75 percent of bicycle-related deaths are linked to traumatic brain injuries.

Even individuals who survive a traumatic brain injury are likely to experience some degree of physical and/or cognitive deficiencies. For example, an individual may experience difficultly with speech or recalling information. In other cases, an individual may experience changes in personality and overall disposition. These types of changes can be difficult to cope with for not only the individual directly impacted, but also his or her loved ones.

In addition to the personal difficulties associated with a brain injury, for many, the financial costs are significant and overly burdensome. In fact, over the course of an individual's life, the "costs of a severe brain injury often exceed four million dollars."
In cases where an individual's brain injury results from a bicycle, car or truck accident caused by another driver; one may choose to take legal action. Compensation recovered via a personal injury lawsuit may help cover costs associated with medical expenses, long-term care costs, disability and lost wages.

Source: The Center For Head Injury Services, "Brain Injury Statistics," 2015

Mayo Clinic, "Concussion," 2015

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