You woke up in the emergency room after an accident—scared, hurting, but lucky to be alive. You were told that you suffered a mild traumatic brain injury, which sounds worse than it really is. When you went home a few hours later with nothing more than a recommendation to “take it easy,” you thought about how much worse your injuries could have been.
But in many cases, this kind of injury hasn’t even begun to show its true colors—and your doctor won’t be close by when it does.
A recent study published in the Emergency Medicine Journal showed that although many resources are available for brain trauma victims in the ER, post-injury testing and counseling is sorely lacking. Some of the most glaring oversights included problems with:
- Pain assessment. Less than 44% of patients who were diagnosed with TBI had proper—or any—documentation of their pain.
- Pain medication. Less than half of all patients who suffered from head pain after an injury were given medication (supporting other studies that say under-treatment of pain is common in ER settings).
- Children. Younger patients were less likely to receive pain medication after a head injury. The most common reasons included parents’ belief that painkillers could cause unwanted side effects or prevent other symptoms from arising. Children were also less likely to undergo blood testing after TBI.
- Follow-up care. Researchers found that, of the 57, 000 patients with mild TBI discharged from emergency rooms every year, most were given no specific follow-up instructions. While a few were told to come back to the ER if symptoms worsened, there was a low rate of referral for further treatment—and some were told they did not need any follow up at all.
The lack of proper treatment for TBI isn’t just worrying, it’s negligent. Victims often return home only to suffer post-concussion symptoms, such as memory problems, confusion, and chronic headaches—some of which can last for over a year.
As trusted Kentucky brain injury lawyers, we know the kinds of financial, mental, and emotional damage medical mistreatment can cause. We can help you get your life back on track by getting you the funds you need for your rehabilitation. Call Gray and White today at (800) 634-8767 or fill out the contact form on the top of this page to start your FREE case evaluation.