If you or a loved one has suffered a brain injury in an auto accident, you may be wondering if the injury is going to bring about any increased risks that go along with aging. Though experts do admit that this specific link hasn't been studied too much, they do believe that the risk could go up in a few different ways.
For one thing, a study that was done by the Institute of Medicine back in 2008 suggested that a person who had a traumatic brain injury would then be more likely to suffer a seizure. Additionally, the study found that people who had poorly controlled seizures saw a larger risk of passing away earlier, when compared to those who did not suffer from this same ailment. In this sense, a brain injury could increase the risk of death as someone gets older.
Other studies have linked shorter lifespans with the degree of physical impairment that the person suffers from as a result of the TBI. The less the person is able to do, the more likely he or she is to pass away at a younger age.
Experts do note that this link was expected and makes perfect sense. A person who cannot swallow properly, for example, will have higher risks due to choking or simply not being able to eat.
Finally, some evidence points to a link between TBIs and Parkinson's disease. It suggests that a person who has suffered a brain injury may have higher odds of developing these symptoms. They could also be at a higher risk for dementia. It is worth stating, though, that experts do not claim there is a direct cause and effect relationship in these cases, but that there is just an association.
When considering compensation after a car accident in Chicago, it's crucial to know the full impact of a TBI on the rest of a person's life.
Source: Brainline, "Aging After Brain Injury: BrainLine Talks with Dr. Steven Flanagan," Victoria Tilney McDonough, accessed March 11, 2016