What are the Common Causes of Brain Injury?

08 May 2019

Brain injury can be a frightening term. Often the subject of hospital television dramas it can seem an abstract concept associated with only the most serious of accidents or illnesses.

Brain injury is a broad term which encompasses minor to serious injuries. As with the severity of the injury, the cause can also vary significantly.

An injury to the brain sustained after birth is known as a ‘acquired brain injury.’ This umbrella term includes any injury, short or long term, caused by damage to the brain, as a result of illness or trauma.

Brain injuries can be sustained in an almost indefinite amount of ways. The common causes include both illness as well as accident, both of which can give rise to a personal injury claim if caused by the negligence of another party. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Road traffic collisions
  • Falls from height
  • Stroke
  • Sports injuries

The majority of our brain injury instructions arise from road traffic accidents or falls from height, often sustained in the workplace.

However, brain injuries can also be caused in unexpected ways. For example, a vertebral artery dissection (VAD) is caused when an artery in the neck is torn and can lead to stroke inducing blood clots. A stroke can follow hours, days or even weeks after the VAD which can making the cause difficult to establish. In short, any activity such as extreme sports, where the neck is suddenly or sharply jerked can trigger this type of injury. Thorough investigation of all activities in the lead up to such an injury is required in these circumstances.

If a brain injury is sustained for any reason due to the negligence of another party then instructing a solicitor to bring a personal injury claim can provide funding for a number of rehabilitation options. If interim payments can be agreed then they can ease the financial burden on Claimant’s unable to return to work as a result of their injuries or provide for those in need of a complex rehabilitation program.

As causes are not always obvious it is always worth seeking legal advice if you are suspicious to the circumstances surrounding the injury. The team at Barlow Robbins has significant experience in understanding and assisting clients who have experienced a variety of brain injuries from different sources.

How can an injury be avoided?

It is impossible to provide a failsafe method to avoid a brain injury, but, taking care during everyday activities can minimise your risk:

  1. Always use any safety equipment available Always wear any safety equipment available when carrying out potentially hazardous activities. For example always wear a helmet when cycling and your seatbelt when travelling by car.

  2. Consider your surroundings Whether at home or in the workplace there are simple and inexpensive safety measures you can take to minimise the risk of injury. For example, a non slip bath mat in the shower or better lighting around your stairs.

  3. Know the signs and seek help quickly Catching an illness or injury early can be vital to stop it developing. Learn to recognise the signs of concussion or stroke for example, so that you can act quickly. If in doubt always seek medical advice as soon as possible as a good recovery is more likely the sooner treatment is received.
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  • Identifying brain injury - Subtle clues for your GP to look out for (read article)
  • Motorcyclist sustained serious multiple injuries and brain injury (read article)
  • Get Diagnosed – Get the right help from the right people (read article)
  • Man suffers Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) following motorcycle accident (read article)
  • Timescales for Rehabilitation after Brain Injury (read article)
  • How do I get help after suffering an Acquired Brain Injury (ABI)? (read article)
  • Effects of brain injury on the family and the stress and strains it causes (read article)
  • Living with someone who has a brain injury (read article)
  • Acquired Brain Injury: location of the injury and the impact on functioning (read article)
  • The effects of living with an Acquired Brain Injury (read article)
  • Woman who suffered a major trauma with brain injury after being hit by a car undergoes rehabilitation (read article)
  • Integrating back into work after an Acquired Brain Injury (read article)
  • Man involved in car accident has sustained complex muscular skeletal injuries and brain injury (read article)
  • Developments in Brain Injury Rehabilitation (read article)
  • Brain Injury - Overview (read article)

For further advice on the above topics, please call us on 01483 464222 or alternatively email