There are many popular misunderstandings about brain injuries. Some people want to dismiss them as a simple”head injury” or concussion, as if this makes them sound like something minor. Too many people mistakenly believe recovery from a brain injury occurs rapidly and recovery is always complete.
On average, about half of the patients who have been diagnosed with a mild traumatic brain injury should expect to recover fully within about a month. About 80 to 90% should recover within 6 to 12 months. However, there is a very distinct group who will continue to suffer persistent symptoms for additional months and years.
There are risk factors for people who have a higher likelihood for long lasting consequences from a mild traumatic brain injury. Those risk factors include persons over the age of 40, anyone who has struggled in school, females, and those with a history of alcohol abuse, prior head injury or multiple traumas.
It can never be assumed that someone who’s been diagnosed with even a mild traumatic brain injury will quickly or fully recover. Many times the outcome will not be known for quite some time. This is why it is so important the symptoms be described to a doctor so they are accurately included in the patient’s medical record. There are important medical treatments that may be used to help with the symptoms. Medical tests, including different types of MRI, may also be used in confirming the diagnosis of a head injury.
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