A study by the University of Washington concludes that roughly half of the survivors of a traumatic brain injury will experience a bout of clinical depression. Traumatic brain injury is also sometimes called a concussion. As reported in today’s Los Angeles Times, the UW report states that traumatic brain injury victims that do experience depression report significantly more pain, greater mobility problems, and more difficulty carrying out tasks than those not plagued by post injury depression.
An estimated 1.5 million Americans suffer from a traumatic brain injury annually. Traumatic brain injuries are frequently linked toauto accidents, trip and fall accidents, or other instances of trauma where the head is impacted. After reviewing the study, Dr. David Hovda, a neurobiologist at the UCLA Brain Injury Research Centernoted that the study made clear what many had long suspected: that depression following traumatic brain injury can have a severe impact on eventual recovery.
A traumatic brain injury or concussion often results in subtle changes to the victim. These subtle changes can include personality changes, loss of memory, headaches, and mood disturbances. Although many victims see their symptoms clear up within a year, about 80,000 people will continue to face major disability following a traumatic brain injury.
If you are an accident victim, don’t discount the impact oftraumatic brain injury.