Making a recovery after brain damage can be uncertain. In some cases, full recovery is achieved; however, some people may never be able to make a full physical recovery. As with any injury, the first step to making a recovery is an accurate diagnosis.
Level of Brain Damage Can Be Difficult To Determine At First
When a brain injury occurs as a result of medical malpractice or a traumatic event, it is important to find out what part of the brain is involved and the extent of the brain damage. It may be hard to trust another doctor, but it is critical to see a doctor who specializes in brain problems and to get tests, such as an MRI scan, head CT or CAT scan, or EEG test.
Once your brain injury is accurately diagnosed and the extent of the brain damage is learned, your doctor will discuss possible treatment options. Unfortunately, not all brain injuries respond to treatment, but some brain injury treatments can include:
- Cooling the brain. The brain reaches high temperatures during oxygen deprivation, and cooling it helps limit further brain damage.
- Oxygen therapy. This can include a ventilator so that oxygen in the blood is increased in order to restore oxygen to the brain.
- Medication. Steroids can help reduce brain swelling. Barbiturates can help reduce brain activity. Anti-seizure medications can help control seizures in brain injury patients. And other medications can help get the proper amount of oxygenated blood to the brain.
Severe Brain Injuries Can Lead To Permanent Damage
Most of the time, people who suffer a mild brain injury will go on to live a relatively normal life and will make a full or near-full recovery. In cases of moderate brain injury, recovery is still possible, but it may take several months or years. Unfortunately, those with a severe brain injury—who spend a long time unconscious or in a coma and don’t have normal function recovered within the first month of the brain injury—may have a difficult time recovering from brain damage.
Once a person has been treated for the brain damage, it is important that rehabilitation begins as soon as possible. An individualized program will be created for the person that includes physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, and even counseling, so a patient can reach a maximum level of function. However, even with mild and moderate brain injuries, recovery might not mean a person is symptom-free. Many people with brain injuries have to learn how to live with their disabilities.
Contact a Fairfax Medical Negligence Lawyer For More Help
Whether you or your loved one made a full recovery or not, you may still have a legal claim for your damages. To learn more about your rights, fill out a short firm on our website to get a free copy of our book, Medical Negligence: Your Rights in the District of Columbia.