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Traumatic Brain Injury Experienced Personally By A Doctor

Feb 04, 2014 | Personal Injury

Traumatic brain injury causes long-term life-changing conditions for the injured person and dramatically impacts the ongoing costs associated with caring for the patient, says traumatic brain injury lawyer attorney Keith T. Belt.

Maria Romanas, MD, PhD, a pathologist at the VA Medical Center in Kansas City, story is an example of what it takes to salvage a life and career from severe traumatic brain injury (TBI). It took her 13 years to diagnose herself with a brain injury and 16 more years to find the cognitive rehabilitation she needed to maximize a functional recovery. For the most part, she did this on my own receiving little to no guidance from the medical community and unfortunately, the standard of medical practice has really not changed much in 30 years.

She suffered a severe brain injury at age 18 in 1984 (roll-over motor vehicle accident, open fracture of the left temporal skull, emergent neurosurgery, 3-day coma, 30-minute retrograde amnesia, and 7-day post-traumatic amnesia). She was walking and talking at discharge and other than plastic surgery, no follow-up or rehab was arranged. Her mother was simply told, “Push her gently.”

Although she knew about the skull fracture, no one ever told her that she suffered a brain injury. She slept almost continually for a couple months and took daily naps for the following year, but everyone thought she had escaped “unscathed.”

It took her 29 years to find the help that she needed, primarily because the medical community knows little to nothing about how to recognize the cognitive impairments caused by brain injuries or what can be done about them. With one exception, all the doctors did not even know about HCR. Even the doctor who knew about it did not mention it.

She found out about HCR on her own, researched it, and paid for it on her own. It is not an exaggeration to say that HCR enabled her to take back my life, but she would wager that 99% of physicians don’t know anything about HCR or even that it exists.

Although now considered a practice standard, HCR is not widely available outside of Europe, Israel, New York, and New Jersey. A Department of Defense report states that HCR is the ideal form of cognitive rehabilitation. Yet military and civilian insurance refuse to pay for this or any form of cognitive rehabilitation based on “evidence-based” medical reviews that threw out 90% of the evidence because the studies were not randomized controlled trials.

Source for additional information: MedPage Today: TBI Tied to Higher Dementia Risk

Consult the Alabama Traumatic Brain Injury Lawyers at Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. Today

If you or a loved one has suffered from a devasting moderate or severe traumatic brain injury, call the traumatic brain injury lawyers from Belt, Bruner, & Barnett P.C. at (205) 933-1500 or use our online form. We offer a case evaluation free of charge and are ready to help you obtain full compensation for your losses. With offices in Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville, and Montgomery, our attorneys will quickly travel to investigate your case.