Traumatic brain injury: just the words are frightening. You know, without knowing anything else, that this is a serious issue. There are going to be costs — physical, emotional and financial — associated with these words. But do you really understand all the costs associated with a traumatic brain injury?

The overall costs of traumatic brain injuries in the United States is measured in the billions. That includes the costs of medical care as well as costs associated with loss of wages or productivity because a person who has experienced TBI can’t always return to work. In fact, at the beginning of this century, the total annual costs were as high as $60 billion, and they’ve only risen since.

What are the costs for the individual? First, there are the direct costs of care immediately following a TBI. For some, that can include charges associated with emergency room and follow up care. For others, costs might include hospital admissions and even surgery. Next, individuals with TBI often need long-term medical care, which might include medication or physical or occupational therapy. Sometimes, in-home therapies and equipment are required.

In extreme cases, individuals might not be able to function on their own for a long time — if ever — which results in costs associated with caregivers and equipment. Others might have to seek new work training because a TBI left them unable to perform a current job.

All of these types of costs are financial in nature — we haven’t even touched on the emotional and mental loss that can occur. Sometimes, TBI can impact an entire family. No matter what costs you are facing, if you experienced a TBI that was the fault of someone else’s actions, then you could have options for seeking compensation for your costs. Speaking with a New Jersey personal injury attorney can help you understand what those options are.

Source: Brainline, “Facts About Traumatic Brain Injury,” accessed Feb. 19, 2016