According to two small studies published in the journal Pediatrics, children who have severe traumatic brain injuries early in life may have impaired cognitive development and long-term intellectual ability as they get older.
The first study compared the social, intellectual, and behavioral functions of more than four dozen children who had experienced a traumatic brain injury before the age of three, most of which were the result of falls, with 27 children of the same age who had never sustained a TBI. The study found that mild, less traumatic injuries, comparable to those commonly sustained from short falls, had no negative effect on any of the child’s functions.
The second study, which was conducted at the same children’s hospital, looked at 40 children who had sustained a TBI at some point between the ages of two and seven. More of the injuries incurred from motor vehicle or pedestrian accidents than were in the first study and therefore the children had more severe TBIs in this study. The researchers involved examined the children immediately after the injury, and then again 12 months, 30 months, and ten years later.
Children in this study who suffered a mild traumatic injury recovered well and didn’t face a dramatic deficit in their intellectual abilities, similar to what was seen in the first study. Researchers also found children with severe TBI had problems with their intellectual, behavioral, and social development. More specifically, children with severe traumatic brain injuries seemed to lag behind their peers in intellectual development for upwards of three years after their injury.
These two studies challenge long-held beliefs within the medical community that young children are not as vulnerable to the negative effects of traumatic brain injury. Rather, factors like the severity of the TBI and the amount of trauma associated with the injury hold more weight in determine how much of a deficit a child may experience.
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If you have experienced a traumatic brain injury, take the first step to protect your legal rights– contact the personal injury firm of Bice Law serving both North Carolina and South Carolina. You only have a limited time after your injury to file a claim, so act quickly. Call 877-BICE-877 today or submit an online request to get a free consultation with a traumatic brain injury attorney. Results are how we measure success – we’ve built a strong reputation both in and out of the courtroom, and we’ll put our experience and expertise to work on your behalf.