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Traumatic brain injuries and workers’ compensation

Published on Dec 22, 2020 at 5:28 pm in workers' compensation.

Many work environments pose a different threat of potential injuries. However, some injuries are a threat across a wide-range of industries. From construction sites and warehouses, to office buildings and delivery routes, traumatic brain damage is one of the most common workplace injuries in Pennsylvania and throughout the nation, according to the National Center for Biotechnology and Genomic Information.

Over a five-year period, traumatic brain injuries were involved in 46% of fatal workplace falls, and 22% of work-related deaths, as reported by NCBI. Not only do TBIs affect companys’ productivity and bottom line, they affect peoples’ ability to make ends meet, psychological wellbeing and physical health.

What is traumatic brain damage?

A sudden impact to the head can cause the soft tissue of the brain to smack into the hard skull bone. This blow can cause bruising, bleeding and inflammation in the brain. Depending on the severity of the impact and the area of the brain that is injured, people may show different signs and symptoms of damage.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, signs of brain damage include persistent headaches, nausea and vomiting, seizures, convulsions, muscle weakness, tingling in the extremities, fatigue, mood changes and sensory deficiencies.

How can brain trauma occur?

Brain trauma can happen in almost any work environment. The leading cause of brain damage is falls, as reported by the CDC. Workers may trip over clutter on the floor, slip on an unattended spill, fall off of scaffolding, fall from a forklift or off of a ladder. Furthermore, falling objects striking workers are the second-leading cause of traumatic brain damage in the U.S.

It is an employer’s responsibility to provide a safe work environment for employees. In addition to providing adequate safety training, companies must ensure that proper safety precautions are in place to protect workers.

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