What is a Non-Traumatic Brain Injury, aka an Acquired Brain Injury? While the impact of an ABI is fairly similar to what you may experience after an ABI, the cause is different. ABIs occur because of something internal, such as a lack of oxygen, a brain tumor, exposure to toxic chemicals, or a medical issue inside the brain. Common causes of ABIs include aneurysms, loss of oxygen due to fire, strokes, near-drowning accidents, meningitis, heart attacks, and brain tumors.
Acquired brain injuries may occur as the result of a traumatic brain injury. For example, consider a fall that causes bleeding in the brain. This is a TBI. The brain bleed restricts oxygen flow to a specific part of the brain. This is an ABI. The combined effects of a TBI and ABI often cause far more serious deficits than either one alone.
How These Injuries Affect the Brain
TBIs and ABIs can affect the brain and body in a huge variety of ways. Everything depends on which part of the brain is affected and how severe the injury is. For example, a TBI that primarily affects the occipital lobe could leave a victim blind, even if their eyes are perfectly healthy. An ABI that stops oxygen flow to the temporal lobes could negatively impact hearing and memory.
Cognitive function is often affected by TBIs and ABIs. A victim may experience poor memory, difficulty paying attention, difficulty problem solving, limited understanding of language, and struggle to follow a chain of thought. The senses, including hearing, vision, touch, and smell may also be damaged after a brain injury.
Some of the physical deficits a brain injury victim may experience include strength, balance, coordination, ability to walk, ability to swallow, and bowel and bladder control. Brain injuries can also cause muscle stiffness and tightness that limit mobility.
Brain injuries may also have a negative effect on one’s behavior and emotions. People may report an uptick in mental health issues, unexpected irritability or fits of rage, difficulty managing impulses, poor emotional regulation, inappropriate laughter or comments, or changes in personality.
Knowing What Type of Injury You Have
If your symptoms occur after an accident, such as an animal attack, car crash, or fall, you’re likely suffering a TBI. However, since TBIs can cause ABIs, it’s important to seek medical care as soon as possible after an accident. The brain can recover remarkably well from a variety of injuries, but the speed of treatment plays a big factor in how well you heal. Don’t wait until an injury becomes unbearable to seek treatment.
Explore Your Legal Options with Mann & Potter
A brain injury could change how you live the rest of your life. If your injury occurred because of someone else’s negligence, it’s time to hold them accountable with a personal injury claim. Call Mann & Potter at 205-879-9661 or to set up a consultation now.