“Approximately 1.7 million people sustain a traumatic brain injury every year,” said Anthony S. Bottar, of Bottar Law, PLLC, a team of Syracuse personal injury attorneys representing individuals disabled by a concussion or post-concussion syndrome.
According to the CDC, 80% of people with a traumatic brain injury are treated and released by an emergency room. Concussions account for most of those TBIs (75%). “After a TBI, many people appear normal on the outside, yet some people never fully recover. And 3% of TBI victims die – as many as 50,000 people each year,” Bottar added.
Most TBIs are caused by falls, followed by car accidents, impacts/collisions (i.e., athletics), and assaults. With advancements in imaging technology, the medical community now acknowledges that a concussion, even a mild concussion, can harm the brain on a cellular level, with devastating consequences. In turn, a Concussion Bill has been introduced. It applies to all school age students, not just student athletes, and provides that “in the event that there is any doubt as to whether a pupil has sustained a concussion, it shall be presumed that he or she has been so injured until proven otherwise.” Pupils will be prohibited from participating in school athletic activity until they are concussion symptom-free for 24 hours. The Bill also requires that concussions be reported to the New York State Education Department
Signs and symptoms of a concussion include: confusion, memory loss, headaches, dizziness, balance problems, ringing in the ears, vision problems, nausea, vomiting, slurred speech, poor coordination, fatigue, inappropriate emotions, sleep disturbance, light sensitivity, anxiety, depression, seizures and loss of consciousness.
According to Syracuse.com, Brian Rieger, Ph.D., the director of the Concussion Management Program at Upstate Medical University, stated “the real recommendation is that if you’ve been symptom free for 24 hours, you can begin the process of getting back to play.”