Providence Personal Injury Law Blog

Monday, December 10, 2018

New Guidelines Suggested for Treatment of Traumatic Brain Injuries in Children

What is the best course of action for treating children with brain injuries?

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) are among the most common injuries suffered by people of all ages.  TBIs can occur from any violent blow or jolt to the head. Each year, over 1.4 million people in the United States will suffer a traumatic brain injury.  Children, with their still-developing brains, are at a heightened risk of serious brain injuries. Recently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention appointed a research group to develop new guidelines for the care of traumatic brain injuries.  Our Providence, Rhode Island personal injury lawyers explore the new proposed guidelines and how they may help children heal faster.

Causes of TBIs in Children


Children can suffer traumatic brain injuries in any number of ways.  The most common cause of childhood TBIs is sports and falls. Contact sports like football, soccer, and hockey all frequently lead to blows to the head which may result in traumatic brain injuries.  Additionally, children are active and playful, putting them at risk of falls. Children can suffer TBIs while biking, skating, using playground equipment, and the like.

Creating Standard Guidelines

The CDC and other research entities felt the need to create guidelines for the standard treatment of traumatic brain injuries due to the current lack of consistency in the field.  As of now, numerous conflicting guidelines exist as to the treatment of children with brain injuries. Often, it was recommended that the child be restricted from going to school or participating in other activities until symptoms resolve, which at times could take months.  However, the most recent research suggests that prolonged rest may actually slow down recovery times and leave children stressed or otherwise suffering.

Some key recommendations set out in the guidelines include:

  • Limit physical activities for just the first few days after the injury, while allowing children to return to typical daily activities shortly after;

  • Seek medical attention should your child’s symptoms not resolve within four to six weeks after the injury;

  • Generally, health care providers should not conduct brain scans on every pediatric patient.  Rather, the child should be assessed for risk factors.

    If your child is injured in an accident that may have been due to the negligence of another person, contact a personal injury lawyer right away for an evaluation of your child’s legal rights.

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