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Study Finds Children with Head Injuries May Be at Risk for Long-Term Complications

 Posted on November 07, 2016 in Personal Injury

Wisconsin accident attorney, Wisconsin personal injury attorneyEach year, around 62,000 children sustain a head injury. Of those, around 2,500 will suffer fatality, 37,000 will be hospitalized, and another 435,000 will simply be treated in an emergency room and then released. Those that suffer fatality are, by far, the most devastating of all cases. However, even when children survive the injuries sustained during an auto accident, fall, abuse, or while playing sports, their road to healing can be a difficult one. A new study, published in the medical journal, PLoS Medicine, indicates that journey may be even more complicated than previously realized.

Disability, Psychiatric Problems, and Early Mortality

In a study that tracked the life trajectories of more than a million Swedish children, researchers examined the likelihood of long-term complications and difficulties in the lives of those that had suffered a head injury before the age of 25. Results showed that these individuals, when compared with their peers, were more likely to have a shorter, more difficult life.

Specifically, researchers found that those who sustained head injuries during their youth were nearly twice as likely to be hospitalized for a psychiatric illness by the time they reached their mid-thirties, as much as 76 percent more likely to claim disability because they were unable to work, and 72 percent more likely to suffer mortality before the age of 36. Those that suffered a head injury were also more likely to drop out of school and receive welfare payments than their non-injured peers.

To ensure these outcomes were not simply due to socioeconomic factors or family issues, they then compared the outcomes of siblings – one of which had sustained a head injury and one of which did not. Again, the results showed an increased risk of psychiatric illness (57 percent), disability (49 percent), and premature mortality (40 percent) in those that had sustained at least one head injury during their youth.

Even more concerning was that the risk of these issues increased if the head injury was more severe, or if the individual had suffered more than one injury. For example, those who had visited the hospital for two or more brain injuries before the age of 25 were nearly two-and-a-half times more likely to wind up on disability than their uninjured peers.

How the Study May Affect Compensation for Injuries Caused by Negligence

When a child sustains a head injury because of a car accident, a fall on the property of another, because of abuse at a daycare or school, or through any other type of negligence, the family may be due compensation for their child’s injuries. To ensure the amount of this compensation is fair and just, it is important that all factors, including the possibility of long-term complications, are considered. This study, though only a statistical analysis, gives some insight as to what those long-term issues may be.

At Gimbel, Reilly, Guerin & Brown, LLP we work hard to make sure all factors are considered in your personal injury case. Backed by more than 40 years of experience, our Milwaukee, Wisconsin personal injury attorneys will fight to get your family the compensation that you deserve. To learn more about how we can help with your unique situation, call 414-271-1440 and schedule a consultation with us today.





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