A single workplace injury can have lasting consequences, especially when it result in a traumatic brain injury (TBI). While it depends on the nature and severity of the damage, serious TBI typically calls for extended treatment, and most people require a combination of therapies to move forward in their recovery.
Understanding the course recovery can take is crucial if you or a loved one has recently experienced a TBI at work. Here are a few possible outcomes and what to expect from the long-term recovery process.
With severe TBI, people often progress through certain stages. People in comas will not respond to stimulus, cannot speak, and appear unconscious. Some people progress from comas to vegetative states, where they do respond to certain stimulus, open their eyes, and exhibit movements. However, these movements usually result from stimulus and not from the person’s deliberate thought or action.
There are also minimally conscious states, where the person exhibits partial awareness of their surroundings. In this case, the person can take some simple directions and respond to basic commands, but they exhibit minimal control over their faculties. Minimally conscious states are typically the final stage before a person becomes fully conscious.
Extended effects vary greatly from person to person, but there are some complications that affect many people with moderate to severe injuries. For instance, many people require assistance from a caregiver to help with daily tasks and chores. Injury victims may also require assistance going back to work, which can include time spent working with a vocational counselor. Mental health issues, including depression, are also common.
There are many factors that can impact long-term recovery from TBI, including the extent of the injury and the presence of complications. While medical staff will answer questions to the best of their abilities, only time will tell the true effects of TBI.