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How much does care for a traumatic brain injury usually cost?

On Behalf of | Apr 9, 2024 | Accidents & Incidents

There are multiple ways for car crashes to injure people’s brains. Obviously, blunt force trauma caused by people hitting their heads on part of the vehicle or getting thrown from the vehicle is a major risk. Violent shaking and spinning motions can also cause bruising or inflammation of the brain. Explosions and penetrating injuries might also lead to traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) for those involved in car crashes.

Whatever the mechanism that generates a TBI, people can typically expect substantial expenses afterward. Mild TBIs may not lead to any lasting damage but may produce disruptive symptoms after the initial injury. Moderate to severe TBIs involve some degree of permanent injury to the structure of the brain.

People often require extensive medical intervention both right after the trauma and for the rest of their lives. How much does treatment for a TBI cost?

Costs often dwarf insurance coverage

Accurately estimating the medical expenses generated by a TBI can be a challenge. The average costs range wildly depending on the nature of the injury, someone’s age and numerous other factors. The type of treatment someone requires may vary from trauma care and surgery to rehabilitative services.

Researchers have established a very broad spectrum for average brain injury treatment costs. Some people with moderate brain injuries incur an average lifetime medical expense of just $85,000. Even that is more than the basic medical coverage available through a bare-bones car insurance policy.

Those with more serious injuries and younger people with TBIs may have much higher lifetime care costs. People may require surgery or life support. The upper end of the average for care costs is $3 million. Those costs don’t include lost wages for the injured person, lost wages incurred by family members providing support and the cost to alter housing and vehicles to make them accessible. There are thousands of dollars in secondary expenses that people may need to cover in addition to their direct medical costs.

Those adjusting to life after incurring brain injuries may need to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit, as insurance may leave them with huge expenses to cover. Learning more about the long-term impact of a car crash injury may benefit those preparing to seek compensation from at-fault parties.