When a Motorcycle Accident Causes a Head Injury
Whenever motorcycle riders and their passengers get onto their bike for a ride, they are automatically vulnerable to the high risk of suffering head injuries in an accident. This is because motorcycles offer so little protection as compared to passenger vehicles. When accidents involving motorcycles do occur, they can result in the biker receiving head injuries, including brain trauma that can require extensive treatment, hospitalization and rehabilitation. That is, if the brain injury does not lead to paralysis, other debilitation or even death. Head injuries often leave lasting effects when the motorcyclist survives the accident.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), motorcycle riders are 16 times more likely than passengers in an automobile to suffer fatal injuries in a traffic accident. Motorcyclists are also four hundred percent more likely to suffer injuries in an accident. The leading cause of disability or fatality in a motorcycle wreck is a head injury. This is why it is so important that motorcycle riders and their passengers wear a helmet each and every time they ride.
Consequences of a Motorcycle Accident Head Injury
When a motorcycle accident causes the rider to strike his or her head on the pavement or other surface, the result is commonly a traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBIs range from minor injuries like concussions to more severe injuries that can be life-changing, some of which require the injured person to have long-term care.
There are three degrees of traumatic brain injury suffered by victims of motorcycle accidents. These three degrees are mild, moderate and severe. A mild TBI is a concussion. A concussion may or may not result in loss of consciousness.
When a moderate traumatic brain injury occurs, the motorcycle accident victim is knocked unconscious for a period of time that can range from only minutes to several hours. Moderate traumatic brain injury is also marked by confusion, disorientation and impairments to cognition, physical abilities and behavior. These impairments can be permanent. The motorcycle accident victim may also slip into a coma that can last days, weeks or much longer.
Traumatic brain injury can change the motorcycle accident victim’s life forever. The victim may struggle with loss of basic functioning, some of which can lead to depression. Mental impairments of multiple types are possible after brain injury and there is even a higher suicide risk among victims of this kind of injury. This is why it is critical that both physical and psychological treatments are gained after a motorcycle accident with injuries.
Head Injury Treatment after a Motorcycle Accident
Post-accident treatment will depend upon injury severity. Any rider who is in a motorcycle accident should be evaluated by a doctor right away to ensure minor injuries do not worsen and that there are no major injuries that are not yet realized. When a minor head injury occurs, the doctor may simply order rest and medication. But when brain injury is severe, the injured motorcyclist may need hospitalization, surgery, rehabilitation and physical therapy.
Therapy after a motorcycle accident head injury can go on for months or even years. When years of rehab are needed, an accident victim may still never be able to regain their pre-accident health and could need nursing care throughout the rest of their life.
All treatment for a brain injury or other head trauma is expensive. This is why riders who suffer traumatic brain injury need legal help for gaining compensation after the accident. These are some of the most expensive injuries anyone can suffer. Care can cost tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars. Some head injury cases cost in the millions for treatment, especially when the rider is young when the accident occurs.
Prevention of Traumatic Brain Injury in Motorcycle Accidents
Wearing a helmet is the best means of protecting yourself against a motorcycle accident head injury. Riders who wear helmets are more likely to survive their accident and they also suffer less severe injuries than those not wearing a helmet.
It is also important to ride safely. This is an important safeguard against being in a motorcycle accident, particularly one causing severe head injury. Unfortunately, even the safest riders are vulnerable to the actions of other unsafe drivers on the road.
If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident or your loved one has suffered traumatic brain injury, other injuries or was killed in a crash of this type, you need representation by an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer.