Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when the head suddenly hits an object, receives a blow, or when an object pierces the skull causing brain damage. The symptoms of a traumatic brain injury can be mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the extent of the damage. Often, TBIs are not immediately obvious.
Traumatic brain injuries have emerged as a leading physical condition among servicemembers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. If you or a loved one has suffered a TBI while on active military duty, contact an experienced VA disability attorney at our firm for help with filing a traumatic brain injury claim for benefits.
The leading causes of traumatic brain injuries include bullets, explosions, falls, motor vehicle crashes, and assaults. The widespread use of improvised explosive devices, such as roadside bombs in recent conflicts, increases the likelihood that military personnel will be exposed to blasts that could cause a TBI.
Blasts are the leading causes of traumatic brain injuries for military personnel in war zones. Among the servicemembers medically evacuated between January 2003 and June 2007 from combat theaters in Iraq or Afghanistan to Walter Reed Army Medical Center, 30 percent had sustained some form of TBI, according to the Defense and Veterans’ Brain Injury Center.
Traumatic brain injuries can vary greatly in symptoms from mild cases that involve confusion or being dazed, to severe cases that may involve an extended period of unconsciousness or amnesia. With mild TBIs, which are known as concussions, there may be no visible head injury. Symptoms can be subtle and similar to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. The injury can be serious nonetheless.
Veterans may experience physical symptoms including headaches, dizziness, anxiety, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and sleep disturbances. Mild traumatic brain injuries can have lasting effects on a veteran’s ability to return to work.
In October 2008, the VA revised its regulations regarding TBIs. Letters went out to approximately 32,000 veterans notifying them that their disability rating for traumatic brain injuries could potentially increase, even though their symptoms may not have changed.
If you think you may be eligible for disability benefits on the basis of traumatic brain injury, call or send us an email today for a free consultation. We can offer guidance regarding your eligibility, and we do not charge unless we are successful in obtaining disability benefits on your behalf.