Mild brain injuries may prove fatal, research finds

For California residents who have suffered a head trauma, a new study gives cause for concern and further reason to pursue compensation for brain injuries caused by negligence. Results published in the Journal of Neurology, NeuroSurgery and Psychiatry show higher rates of death after a diagnosis of mild traumatic brain injury. Direct causes of increased mortality were not identified, but there were hints that lifestyle changes may lessen the overall impact of brain injuries.

The study that was conducted in Scotland consisted of matching 2,428 patients with two control groups. One control consisted of case-matched individuals along specific socioeconomic variables, and the other control was made up of patients in the selected hospitals who were not diagnosed with mild brain trauma. People in a control group who had previously had a head injury were excluded for purposes of the study.

The compiled statistics show that the diagnosis resulted in 4.2 times greater risk of death versus controls for patients between the ages of 15 and 54. In older populations, the increased rate of death was less pronounced at 1.4 times higher. One suggestion of these findings is that the outcomes of brain injuries are not fully understood and may be worse than generally suspected. Though lifestyle changes may reduce the impact, mistakes in diagnosis would make this mitigation more difficult.

California residents who suspect a misdiagnosis of a traumatic brain injury may be at greater risk than first suspected. Victims of this type of medical negligence may be eligible for compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, and increased risk of future health problems incurred as a result. A medical malpractice attorney may be of assistance in examining an injured victim’s medical records and obtaining other evidence to establish a failure to exhibit the requisite standard of care.

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