If you get hurt in a car accident, one of the worst kinds of personal injury that you can suffer is a head injury. Because of how complex the brain is, even the most common type of head trauma – a concussion – is a serious injury that can take months to fully heal.
Now, researchers from the Medical College of Wisconsin are throwing doubt on one of the most common ways medical professionals diagnose and track concussions – the ImPact Cognition Test.
How Concussions Happen
A concussion happens whenever the surface of your brain comes into contact with the inside of your skull. This can happen when you get hit hard in the head, or when your neck moves suddenly and violently to one side. In the first case, the direct impact on the outside of your skull can push your skull into your brain. In the second case, the snapping movement of your neck can make your skull move before the momentum carries over to your brain, creating a concussion.
If a concussion does happen, the symptoms that you can feel vary across a huge spectrum. Sometimes, people who suffer a concussion feel nauseous, get dizzy, are suddenly fatigued, or lose vision. However, with so many different possible symptoms, doctors often have a tough time diagnosing a concussion properly or accurately.
Diagnosing Concussions Through the ImPact Cognition Test
One tool that doctors have used to diagnose a concussion is the ImPact Cognition Test. This test measures someone’s attention span and reaction time, as well as their short-term memory and problem solving skills, both before and after a possible concussion.
Unfortunately, the ImPact Cognition Test is far from perfectly accurate. Additionally, it has one serious drawback: You need to have taken the test before their head injury to establish a baseline. This makes it useful for athletes who are at risk for concussions, but limits its value for people who suffer head injuries in car or motorcycle accidents.
Study Suggests a Lag Between a Concussion and Its Symptoms
A new study, though, has found evidence that the symptoms of a concussion often clear up before the brain has actually healed. The study, spearheaded by Dr. Michael McCrea, used advanced images of the brain, and found that people who passed diagnostic tests like the ImPact Cognition Test still had telltale signs of a concussion. This means that people who are still suffering from a concussion are being released from treatment because of tests like the ImPact Cognition Test, putting them at risk for a further head injury.
St. Joseph Car Accident Attorneys at the Smith Law Office
Head injuries are notorious for their complexity and how debilitating they can be. This is often despite seeming trivial when they happen.
Because of how tricky it can be to determine how serious a brain injury actually is, having a personal injury attorney from the Smith Law Office at your side after an accident is crucial. Our lawyers have seen countless brain injury victims, and understand how to represent you both in and out of court to ensure you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us online or call our law office at (816) 875-9373.