What Impact Will Moderate or Severe TBI Have on a Person's Life?

Center of Excellence for Medical Multimedia
What Impact Will Moderate or Severe TBI Have on a Person's Life?

The effects of moderate to severe TBI can be long lasting or even permanent. While recovery and rehabilitation are possible, most people with moderate to severe TBI face life challenges that will require them to adapt and adjust to a new reality.

Moderate to severe TBI can cause permanent physical or mental disability. Because polytrauma is common with moderate to severe TBI, many patients face additional disabilities as a result of other injuries. Even patients who appear to recover fully may have some long-term symptoms that never go away.

Challenges with work and completing tasks that were once routine can be much more difficult than before the injury. Some patients find that the skills and abilities that they used before the injury to meet these challenges are not as sharp as they once were.

These ongoing challenges can also affect the patient’s personal life. People who have experienced brain injuries may take longer to do cognitive or “thinking” tasks associated with memory, such as coming up with the correct change in the checkout line at the grocery store or placing an order at a restaurant. Family relationships will almost certainly change, and in some cases the patient will be totally dependent on their caregivers.

Despite the advances in early diagnosis and treatment of moderate to severe TBI, the fact remains that traumatic brain injury will be a life-changing experience for many patients. Helping the patient, family members, and caregivers to cope with these long-term consequences is an important part of TBI rehabilitation.

Motor Deficits and Disabilities

For many patients, the damage to the brain resulting from a moderate to severe TBI may lead to life-long disabilities or motor deficits. The term disability in relationship to TBI means a loss of physical or mental function caused by damage to the brain. Motor deficits refer specifically to the effect of damage on motor skills or movement.

Examples of disabilities and motor deficits caused by moderate to severe TBI include:

  • Paralysis
  • Spasticity (muscle stiffness) or uncontrolled movements
  • Problems walking, talking, or swallowing
  • Difficulty carrying or moving objects
  • Vision problems
  • Loss of fine motor skills, such as buttoning a shirt
  • Inability to recognize something based on touch
  • Difficulty thinking and remembering
  • Difficulty with social relationships

Other challenges that a patient with moderate or severe TBI may experience include:

  • Difficulty making and keeping personal and professional relationships
  • Difficulty being part of social activities
  • Difficulty taking part in recreational or leisure activities
  • The decreased ability or inability to keep a job or go to school

During the rehabilitation and transition phases of TBI treatment, members of the healthcare team will provide information to the patient and their family members about dealing with these issues. Specific tools and coping strategies will be suggested. Examples of coping strategies and tools include:

  • Writing a detailed list of steps needed to complete a task
  • Using prompts or visual aids to help remember things
  • Using assistive devices to move around, such as a walker or a wheelchair

Learning new ways to do things is a very important part of recovery.

Other Potential Effects

The long-term symptoms of TBI can be divided into several categories, including physical changes, cognitive effects, sensory effects, perceptual effects, social-emotional changes, and others. You’ll find a partial list of these symptoms and possible effects below. Keep in mind that the severity and duration of symptoms and effects will vary greatly from one patient to another, depending on the severity of the TBI.

Physical effects

  • Sleep disorders
  • Loss of stamina (easily fatigued)
  • Appetite changes
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Physical paralysis or spasticity
  • Chronic pain
  • Loss of control of bowel and bladder functions
  • Seizures
  • Difficulty regulating body temperature
  • Hormonal changes

Cognitive effects

  • Difficulty with attention, focus, or concentration
  • Distractibility
  • Memory problems
  • Slow speed of processing
  • Confusion
  • Perseveration, which is the abnormal persistent repetition of a word, gesture, or act
  • Impulsiveness
  • Difficulty with language processing
  • Problems with executive functions, which include planning, cognitive flexibility, abstract thinking, rule acquisition (determining right from wrong), initiating appropriate actions, and inhibiting inappropriate actions

Speech and language effects

  • Aphasia (difficulty with talking or expressing ideas, understanding everyday language, and problems with reading and writing). Types of aphasia can include:
    • Receptive aphasia, which involves difficulty understanding the spoken word, or
    • Expressive aphasia, which means the patient knows what they wish to say but is unable to get the words out. In some cases, the patient is able to perceive and comprehend both spoken and written language, but is unable to repeat what they see or hear.
  • Slurred speech
  • Speaking very fast or very slow
  • Problems with reading comprehension

Sensory and perceptual effects

  • Difficulty recognizing and distinguishing between touch and pressure sensations
  • Difficulty perceiving temperature
  • Difficulty perceiving movement and positions of the arms and legs
  • Difficulty with fine discrimination (for example, distinguishing between small everyday objects, like coins)
  • Difficulty integrating and understanding information gained through the five senses (sight, smell, touch, hearing, and taste)

Effects on vision

  • Partial or total loss of vision
  • Diplopia, which is weakness of eye muscles that causes double vision
  • Blurred vision
  • Problems judging distance
  • Involuntary eye movements, called nystagmus
  • Photophobia, which is intolerance of light

Effects on hearing

  • Decrease or loss of hearing
  • Tinnitus, which is ringing in the ears
  • Increased sensitivity or intolerance to sounds

Effects on smell and taste

  • Anosmia, which is loss of or diminished sense of smell
  • Loss of or diminished sense of taste
  • Bad taste in the mouth

Social-emotional or behavioral effects

  • Dependent behaviors
  • Fluctuating emotions
  • Lack of motivation
  • Irritability
  • Aggression
  • Depression
  • Lack of inhibition
  • Denial or lack of awareness
Posted on BrainLine August 9, 2018. Reviewed March 28, 2019.

About the Author

The Center of Excellence for Medical Multimedia (CEMM) is a dynamic initiative from the Office of the Surgeon General, supplying award-winning interactive multimedia for patient education throughout the Military Health System.

Center of Excellence for Medical Multimedia. (n.d.). Moderate to Severe TBI: Long-Term Effects. Retrieved March 28, 2019, from https://tbi.cemmlibrary.org/Moderate-to-Severe-TBI/Long-Term-Effects

Comments (572)

Please remember, we are not able to give medical or legal advice. If you have medical concerns, please consult your doctor. All posted comments are the views and opinions of the poster only.

I suffered a TBI in 06 from an automobile accident. I have struggled concentrating and am much slower than most. I found nothing to relieve my pain and had no idea I would have lasting effects as I do. I had short term memory loss for 6 month post accident. I went on with life thinking it was just normal to be the way I am. My headaches have gotten so severe I have had numerous trips to the hospital. Botox, surgery and meds. I tried avoiding and still try to avoid my issues. I found out in 2015 that I needed to be seeing someone not only for my neuro defects but my PTSD as well. I started treatment for pain that is still being researched and I am currently having infusions once a week. I can't sleep, concentrate, feel normal or enjoy life right now. My infusions are the only thing keeping me going and providing some relief. I throw up daily I am on shots at home. Pills don't stay down and it's a struggle to tell doctors that and show them your life struggles. I graduated from college and my head got so out of control I haven't been able to work I am a vet tech and my life is my pets. I am very down right now and struggling. I can't get anyone to truly understand that I am suffering and I too like y'all have said don't want to wake up and I wish I didn't survive my accident. Living this way is terrible. I try to stay positive but Lately I can't be. I am hurting so bad struggling to hold food down I can't even go shopping without being gone for several hours I do projects and hobbies I work out and push myself but my meds have caused weight gain. I don't sleep I make myself move non stop to avoid feeling pain. I am on so much medication that would knock most people out yet I am never sleeping. I am getting about two hours of sleep at night with my meds. Every one I see is unable to help bc there isn't much research and knowledge on TBI patients. My family say "you look good". Pain isn't always seen especially when you voice your pain and nothing is done about it. I am having seizures that are "dizzy spells" flashing lights throw me into a seizure. I have tried no meds and it doesn't change my sleep either. I have ringing in my ears, numbness and tingles. I feel every doctor winds up giving up on me. My doctors love to say I am young and it will get better but I am to a point where I am depressed I am irritable and not myself. Honestly I am struggling to even know of trust myself anymore. My husband and I fight bc no one can understand what we live with. TBI is not past it's you forever. I feel stupid, misunderstood and feel I have no-one that believes how hard living knowing what's going on and trying to explain myself to doctors is the worst. We aren't typical "migraine" patients if we were we would have better lives. The pain is unimaginable and the suffering is awful. Memory is terrible enough but to add in pain, anxiety, stress, depression and daily struggles to do tasks that are easy to most are our hardest struggles. What do I do to be me again and to get family , friends and doctors to see and understand? I do dumb things at home and feel like a problem and liability to everyone. I just don't know what to do anymore.

To the person who has got TBI 11 years ago. Hello I don't know if you have any interests to read my comments as I have got TBI about 5 years ago, so it's still much shorter than you. I'm not from an Eng spoken country and my Eng is not great (though my major was Eng at uni) but hope I can express my thoughts correctly here and get through to you. Though everyone is different, I know your feeling and really struggled for a while. I felt disappointed to be awake in the morning, feel "Oh, I lived 1 more day and now have to live 1 more day.". Though I still have pain & abnormal sensation even after healing other physical injuries, I look totally healthy person to other people. They don't see it. People never know what it's like and the problems. Only you know exactly but I leant from experiences that it's always someone else's problem, for other people. Sounds tough but I wanna say just keep going. You are trying and that's great. You are trying really hard. I cry a lot and hate myself & people often, no friends really.....but I just keep going. I'm also fighting everyday with people's eyes. Cant sleep well, used to imagine if I was dead the next morning... Everything seems no valuable. But pls keep going. Do u try to communicate different new people? And try to greet them with a smile. Say thank you and if u help smth u'll b told thank u by someone. Sometimes just tiny conversation will make your feeling lighter. Sometime for sure. You then be more aware and "notice" some plants are growing. You can write down all your thoughts-anger&editors. Sorry it's getting too long(it's one of my issues) but I can listen to your thoughts if you write. Some days I get so tired and no energy but if you don't mind I will be here.

Hello. Other people are telling their BI stories, so I will add mine.

I received a TBI in 2005, when I fell off my bicycle, when we were on holiday, in France. Thankfully, I was wearing my cycling helmet - if I hadn't had that on, things would have been far worse. Our travel insurance paid for a Lear Jet, to fly me home to an intensive care unit, in England.

Apparently, my husband kept reminding me of things.

"Ooh, you've cut your ponytail off!" "Yes darling, I cut it off years ago."

"What a cute little baby. Who is her mother?" "YOU are. I told you that yesterday, and the day before, and the day before...".  I knew our toddler, but I didn't remember our second baby, or that we had moved house to have space for her. Whenever the Occupational Therapist took me home, I am told I argued with him. "We don't live here, we have a flat in Surbiton!"

My day-to-day memory was bad for months. It is fine now, but I guess I will be missing 2 years forever (18 months before the accident, and six months after). I still have awful eyesight - I am officially blind, although I see OK for everyday stuff, but there is *no* *way* I could drive! I am still seeing small improvements in things like my balance, and the neatness of my handwriting (which was illegible, for months and months. It still isn't as tidy as it used to be, but it is not bad at all, now).

I was off work for 18 months (most of which was unpaid), but they did eventually let me go back. I am a university lecturer, and my memory of all the stuff I teach is fine.

However, those 2 years of memory are still missing. I don't remember my second pregnancy, or what she was like for more than a year of her life, but I love her to pieces now. (She is 11 and a half - so, it is 10 1/2 years since my accident).

I just think, all the time, "Well, I am very lucky. I could easily have died!", or my 'blindness could affect me far worse than me being unable to drive, and occasionally bumping into people or things...

I have many of the same feelings of being terribly annoyed when I actually wake up in the morning. It has been 10 years since my TBI- Motor vehicle accident, 6 weeks in a coma. Good times. I think the first few years were so focused on therapy & healing and there was such progress that it kept me going (not to mention I had 3 young kids I was raising as a single mom). But the past few years I have had serious depression & hatred for life. I often think everyone would have been better off had I died in that accident (like ripping off a bandaid) rather than this slow, hateful, depression my life has become. I constantly feel guilt that my youngest son has gotten this crappy excuse for a mother and my older sons remember the 'old' mom and are constantly mad I haven't just bounced back! I have been in therapy- I have tried several different forms. Yoga, Reiki, anything! But I jus hate myself too much and am not sure why my body has betrayed me. Anyway- I get it. And with there was a fix for it as well. Life sucks. then you DON'T die!  Ugh!!

In response to the person who is looking for others with TBIs 10+ years ago: I am in my 11th year now, and I am on the same page as you. I dont know what else to say, though. Yes, you get used to the anosmia. Yes, you accept that your intellect is still strong, but your ability to retain new information is limited. Yes, you can still function fairly well in social situations, but it is now a concerted effort when it used to be second-nature and you were a social butterfly. Now it's just easier to keep the distance. And it's sad and overwhelming and causes you to question who the hell you are and what, if anything, you want in life. But you generally stay silent, because no one will understand anyway. It's been going downhill the past few years. Maybe it always was, and it's just more obvious as of late. Either way, it isn't getting better. I feel lost and without purpose. And I'm more fearful of the future every day.

I was hit on the head so hard by my now x that I did not remember it happening until twenty five years later . I had a flash back of it. I then had two more head injuries. I have found playing solitaire , all of them, helps memory. Play until they are not interesting. Medication from a Parkinson's diagnose had helped a lot. I have more ambition, energy. I wish this medicine had been used on me earlier in my life. I am now 67 my first injury which was hidden by x was when I was 21. My dad noticed I had lost my sense of humor but could not figure why. I learned this later in life and maybe I could not remember him asking me anything. He died in an accident soon after. This article has been so enlightening to me. I do not feel alone now or crazy.

I had a severe TBI 14 years ago when I was 16 and still suffer consequences from it. My memory is horrible what can I possibly do to improve it?

I am 10 years into TBI from a semi rear ending me. I was at a red light on a highway, and he did not brake. My husband took me to Drs but nothing was helping the lack of word recall, dulled experience of life, physical pains, seizures, severe depression and anxiety etc. Until he started taking me to see alternatives. I responded immediately. I trained and love learning about ancient ways of healing, I still experience some affects of long term TBI, but I have the tools to help myself when I get depressed or angry, don't give up!! I have my own clinic in northern bc now and I work with First Nations to move through trauma. My clinic director is another TBI survivor, and we are working with 20+ practitioners to create a reduced rate or free medicine clinic. I love these herbs and remedies: arnica, ashwaganda, chaga mushrooms, green smoothies, probiotics and enzymes, (gaps diet if you have gut issues) (gut and brain are connected, cleansing is amazing) looking for a practitioner? Look for someone that uses a protocol and is guided by muscle testing:) our bodies can do anything!

These stories are endless, please join us for support on Faecbook: The TBI Tribe. Good luck and please continue to heal.

About 11 years ago I was diagnosed as having a TBI after fracturing my skull during a bicycle accident (18 mph, no helmet, slammed on brakes to avoid a pedestrian, handlebar flip -> landed on the back of my skull). Sense of smell never came back--no big deal--but lately I have lost all joy in life. Outsiders assume I have it made: professional success, no family stress, no apparent ailments. The dark reality is that I fantasize about not waking up in the morning and get really irritated when I realize I am still alive after my alarm goes off. I had considered myself somewhat intelligent up until about 4 months ago, before things started to get really bleak, disjointed and extremely awkward in social situations. I'm trying to do everything right to get my brain stimulated in positive ways: exercise, graduate courses, eating healthy, gardening but the bouts of joy are brief and fleeting. Best case: after 30 minutes of positive emotions I am back to wishing I would just drop dead and be done with this miserable life. Anyone else with similar experiences after having suffered a TBI over a decade ago? I'm very scared this is only going to get worse and I have little to no trust in most medical professionals. 

To the person who is trying to get her daughter a job, I suggest getting her into volunteering.  Many times it leads to a job or it can be listed as experience.

Recently my mother, age 92, fell and has a TBI.  2 months later she is unable to feed herself and doesn't have a clue who we are or where she is.  We have no idea how this will continue, this may seem strange, but one day we had a mother, the next day she was gone.  Yes, she is still breathing, but living in a nursing home, unable to care for herself , talks but makes no sense at all.  She has no long term or short term memory.  Anyone else experience this?  We have no idea what to expect, other than we have been told she has little chance of recovery.  My brother who lives closest to her is feeling the affects of daily visits that are getting worse.  This all happened 7 days after my 61 year old Developmentally disabled brother died, we are reeling from PAIN.

Wow is all I can think right now. I was reading this for a friend whose son is right now unconscious from a TBI for a month now, but found it very eye opening for me. I was in a car accident when I was 16 and was in a coma for two weeks with a TBI. Doctors told my parents that when I woke up they shouldn't expect the same person as I was. When I woke up I felt normal. I did see white dots floating and had headaches for about a year, but other than that things seemed ok. I went on to get my Masters in education and have been teaching now for 13 years. After reading this I am now thinking that I might have long term issues due to the TBI. I have very short attention span, if conversations go to fast I get so confused, and I just can't handle more than one thing happening at a time. I thought it was because I was ADD or I just wasn't as smart as some. I act like I understand what is being said, but I have to get alone and rethink what was done or said in order to comprehend. When I am in a meeting or have to learn new things I am silently freaking out inside. I am happy that I read this because just maybe I do have TBI problems and I'm not slower then those around me.

Veterans with brain injuries/PTSD need more information about their brains so they (we - I've lived with a brain injury for 39 years) can better manage the consequences of our brain injuries instead of just reacting to it. Information about what is going on between our ears after a brain injury is long over due.

The biology of brain injury needs to be better understood if we are going to effectively treat brain injury and the consequences of the limbic system fight or flight response.

Learning about the Sympathetic Nervous System is important because the limbic system is where the fight or flight response and many of the problems (anger, memory, processing, etc.) people with brain injuries are centered.

I have found that long walks (over an hour) help me deal with the consequences of fight or flight and improve my anger, memory and processing issues. The key seems to get the blood flowing and oxygen to my brain. Sometimes just sitting and thinking about problems only makes them worse because once the fight or flight gets triggered it prolongs my body’s ability to regulate the hormones that are part of the limbic system.

Bad memories play a role in this too because the stress triggers the fight or flight response. When we set around hoping things will get better it only gets worse because our muscles remain tense and the glucose that should be going to out brain are diverted to our muscles - Institutelearn.fi.edu/learn/brain/stress.html and


The bad memories and problems continue just like a dog chasing its tail. The fight or flight remains in place because of this - we are victims to its consequences.

Exercise and mindfulness-based stress reduction work better than meds because exercise and mindfulness-based stress reduction controls the fight or flight response - meds only treat the symptoms. Becoming more pro-active in our recovery process instead of reacting to the consequences of our brain injury is important. Finding a sense of purpose and meaning is the key to recovery and will lay the foundation for building a new life after brain injury. Having a sense of purpose will also make it easier to get out of bed in the morning. Getting enough rest, worrying less and eating good food also de-rails the fight or flight response. The answers too many of our problems after our brain injury is with controlling stress or we will stay stuck in a life of turmoil and chaos caused by the limbic system fight or flight response.

This was my VISTA Project:

You might want to look into the Uhlhorn Model for people with brain injuries and veterans. This very successful supportive housing model should be replicated throughout America!
















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I had a severe TBI in 2001 and still have severe memory issues I am trying to look for ways to help it...My memory is shot

Hey, no pity party here.  Have TBI with seizure disorder, hit by a speeding truck 2006.  Completed one full IRONMAM post accident and completed the Wounded Warriors Ride starting in Vimy Ridge, finished in Amsterdam.  Set goals and complete them.  You are all AWESOME BEAUTIFUL BROKEN BRAINS

Wow that is awesome! Keep up the great work :)

I am wondering if my mental health issues as a 43 year old that began early adolescence are related to head trauma when I was 7 years old (knocked unconscious with a bat to back of head for less than 30 seconds; I woke up in my father's arms being carried to the car to go to ER; not hospitalized; no fracture); also when 17 years old repeated blows (15-20) to back of head that left me with moderate headaches for weeks afterwards.  As I age I find myself struggling more and more to control my emotions (I feel the physical symptoms of anger all the time but nothing cognitively to cause the anger; like a chemical change in the brain took place), as well as other seemingly meaningless symptoms until I read this article; I have notice the metallic tastes, bumping into things, knocking things over, memory issues (other night I forgot about a movie we had watched the night before and suggested we watch it again.). Sometimes I really just want it to stop....I feel like there will never be peace in my mind.

I have a daughter who had a horse accident at the age of 6yr.  She is 23 now.  She went to cosmetology school for two years.  She tried to take her boards to work in a salon, but never passed those darn tests!  She still lives at home trying to find a job.  Jobs are hard for her!  She can't keep a job for very long.  She wants to be independent, but she can't make enough money to be on her own.  She has a tbi injury from the horse kicking her in the left frontal lobe of her head. We live in Colorado.  I would like to know how I can get her help with trying to get a steady job!  She applies to lots of jobs, and no one seems to call her back!  We contacted and applied at the job center in out state, but didn't help much!  If anyone could help in would greatly appreciate it!  We are at a loss as to what job she can do!  

In 1983 i was in a car accident on november 2. I woke up in john hopkins hospital 2 weeks later. l had no clue were i was or what was going on.l was blind in one eye other eye cut and damaged. Crushed my face on impact, jaw broken in 7 places,nose crushed eye sockets, cheekbones.18 hours on operating table. Woke up blind, jaw wired shut .trake in my neck breathing for me. Doctors re built my face using my driver license and a picture of my sister, and bone pieces from my hips. Doctors drilled a 1/2 inch hole in my forehead ,stuck a couple tubes hooked to testubes with a vacuumed in them.after a second operation to bone graft the hole in my forehead.i started on a new journey.i have very little memory of the accident or my life before.i learned to do almost every thing over .talk eat walk be around people.but i did it. Now 28 years later its haunting me again.memory ,loss vision loss, mood swings,its very possible to live a somewhat normal life.But be prepared and pay attention to any changes to your health, it may come back to haunt you later in life.

Are there any victims of brain damaging ECT, or shock? Was "treated" with this lunatic bogus procedure. TBI the result of 21 closed head injury concussions. Lost 10 years memories, short term memory awful, cognitive, reading problems. Dulling of vibrant personality. Fatigue. Sleep issues, irritation. What stand do brain injury organization have on this barbaric assault? Bad enough to suffer a TBI in an accident, but to have a hospital and doctor deliver multiples is disgusting. People should be able to sue..Are brain injury groups speaking out against this? If not, why not?

Hi, I had a TBI I was ran over by a vw transporter mini bus, I had a subdural heamatoma and had to have a craniotomy and a clip inserted into my brain. I have attention problems and short term memory problems. This is 2 years on and 3 brain ops later and I still have problems. All I can suggest to people in the same or even worse situation is.... Improvise, adapt and overcome! If memory like mine is a problem try leaving alarms or reminders on phones or sticky notes places. Its a pain but it helps especially with appointments :). I wish you all good luck and good healing. Andy :)

To the son that posted on Feb 7th 2016:

So sorry to hear about your mother. Best wishes and prayers for your mom, you and your family.

Your question was posted to the BrainLine Facebook community here: https://www.facebook.com/brainline/posts/10154093065042240

Many members of the community -- caregivers, survivors, and professionals in the field -- have offered advice, esources, and information. Hope this helps!

I'm looking for any advice or knowledge about severe penetrating tbi to the entire right side of the brain. My mother suffered a gun shot wound to the head. It pierced through four of the major lobes on the right side (temporal, frontal, parietal, and occipital lobes) and I have been looking for any information about what could be expected from this type of wound. Most of the literature I have been able to find on tbi is closed head injury or from an accident that has damaged the outside of one or two lobes. My mom has been in a coma for about 3 wks and just recently opened her eyes. She is definitely aware of my presence whether by sight or sound of my voice, we don't yet know. She cant move, speak, or follow commands. She has emotional responses though. She cries when my brother or I talk to her but doesn't really acknowledged the Drs voice. They can't do an MRI on her bc she still has bullet fragments in her head so the Drs are limited on what they can tell us about the damage. I need help! I figure the only way I'll be able to help her is if I can educate myself on her condition and prepare myself for what I will be up against. I'm 28 yrs old and no way prepared for this but am trying to be. Does anyone on here have anything they can share with me about what they know on this type of tbi? Or what they think I can expect for her as far as recovery goes? She is 50 yrs old and quality of life is so important to me bc it is to her. I need to know if she has any chance of still having any type of quality of life? If she does not then I will have to make some pretty tough decision in the near future. I don't want to make the wrong decision on her behalf. So please be open and honest with your advice. I can't stand being in limbo and the Drs are too careful to say anything. I need real people with real opinions. Please help!

my husband had a fall in hospital 12 weeks and 4 days ago and had a massive bleed on the brain the surgeon operated he made it through the first 24 hours then they took him back to theater to remove part of his skull he has suffered 2 strokes since then the doctors never thought he would open his eyes he did after 8 weeks he still isn't responding to anything just he opens his eyes and moves his eyes he has had a subdural hematoma and severe cerebral infraction im still in shock and really dont understand alot ive read many things the surgeon has told me that my husbands prognosis is limited he will be going to a rehabilation centre soon to see if he will make some kind of recovery i have still got faith in my husband and pray everynight for him and thank the angels for everyday i get with him reading all your stories on here has give me some more hope thank you for sharing i feel for every one that it has happened to and my heart goes out to the relatives that has a loved one going through any kind of brain injury


Question: My son,now 26 years old, has a moderate TBI due to a closed head injury, he received at age 12. He broke his skull from his left temple to the nape of neck and the crown of his skull to the nape of neck , basically a pie shape.  

ate TBI. 13 years ago due to closed head injury. He fractured his skull from left temple down past ear to nape of neck/base of skull, and crown of skull to base. ( Basically making a pie shape) The neurosurgeon warned that  commonly with his type of injury aneurysms can develop  later.... he is flying to California from Michigan next week. The last and only time he flew before ( about 7 years ago) he experienced such pain he blacked out, to this day states he was in such pain he really doesn't remember, just remembers PAIN... was extremely sick for three days and lost his hearing for a few weeks, but three months later his ears "popped" and he was like; " Mom I can hear again, my ears popped" ( He didn't realize he couldn't hear well until he could.) He doesn't swim underwater either due to pressure??? Should I worry about him flying again???

He states that the problems he experienced could have nothing to do with his injury - which is true - but I am praying that he will be fine.  

My son, now 26 years old, received  a closed head injury at age 12. He fractured his skull from his left temple to the base of his skull ( nape of his neck/ spinal cord area) and from the crown of his skull to the base. like a slice of pie. he lost hearing in his left ear temporarly due to bleeding. after med flight n neurosugeons etc...  Dr. Garton -  thank you lord - got him to respond, and the access panel surgery to release pressure was not performed. He was diagnosed with an epurduarl hematobin, due to the skull fractures, ... which were too large to disipitate on their own and would need to be medically removed. They did disapear on their own and no medical intervention happened, which was unheard of. The doctor stated that later - 25-30 years old he should have an mri or mra or whatever checks for anyuresms. As they were common later down the road with his type of injury.



I'm 21 and suffer from TBI (skull fracture,temporal lobe,hematoms). Accident happened in February 2015. 

Since may I suffer occasional sickness,vertigo and headaches very similar to migraines and ear which is plugged every 2-3 weeks (do to broken temporal lobe) and noticing extreme changes in emotional states. Oversensitivity and often feeling alone plus excluding myself from crowds of people (I did not enjoy huge amounts of people before but now it's even worse). 

I'm trying to get back on my feet again and currently working part-time but while writing this all I feel is extreme fatigue which I'd like to decrease by any cause. Also have trouble with putting words together sometimes and forgetting what was it that I talked about for the last few minutes. People,you are not alone. All we can do is let the time pass and heals our wounds. Take care of ourselves and continue to progress towards recovery. I'm thinking of starting to take yoga (when fatigue occurs I put on reiki healing music and meditate for 20minutes) so if anyone knows whether yoga works it would be really helpful for all of us. #struggling and trying.

The last paragraph in the narrative above describing "Traumatic Brain Injury" is a description I have not seen before. It nails the dichotomy of Head Injury like nothing I've read before.

Change is good, is all I heard growing up, post TBI. Thirty-five plus years TBI an I now see the playing field as it was meant to be.

TBI rocks your world like nothing before. It is all there for you to see and build from. I've written countless times before expressing these same sentiments.

Your life's mission has just been laid at your feet. A job, 24/7, every day of your life lies before thee...patience is the pre-cursor to all attainment...this lesson can only be learned by the individual dealing with Head Injury.

Patience and Effort.... strive, strive, strive...and light, light, light, awaits at the door of reciprocating flavors, yes, it is true...a penny for a pound of sweat or a penny for a melodious moment will create the same results in a different way...either/or, the term to guide oneself remains, JUST RIGHT...follow its path and effortless is the light!!! AC

Thank you everyone for posting. My adopted son had a moderate to severe TBI due to severe abuse by his birth mom when he was 11 months old.  He is now 9. As he progresses through school, we are starting to see the long term effects of this injury. You all have given me the hope that with the proper "re-learning", he will be able to lead a normal life. Right now he struggles with abstract thinking (which he should be starting to develop), meaning of words, reading comprehension, impulse control, social skills, working memory and attention issues. And this mama is going slightly crazy trying to figure everything out!  Tomorrow we have a meeting with the school to try to get him additional services - this website was so helpful in educating me so I can educate them on TBI's. Thanks again everyone and best of luck!

My name is Robert , i Suffered a tbi to my frontal lobe in 2005 , it changed my life completely . i have had tremors in my hands since and they have got worse . for the past two years i have developed tracers in my vision when i go from a dark room with a t.v. on or just a lamp and i move my head the light will follow and if i move my hands in from of my face they will leave severe tracers as well , then when i go back in to a regular lit room it takes time for them to go away but they do . its so bad i cant go to the movie theater cause i'll get dizzy and completely out of it , i've heard this could be due to low dopamine levels and im going to see a neurologist from it concerns me because i have been told it could be an early symptom of Parkinson ..if anyone has any thing i mean anything to help me figure out what could be causing it get back to me . thank you

I had a non tramatic dual subdural hematoma and spent most of july 2015 in hospital and have had a lot of these symptoms and have poor train of thought and self worth now,im 53 white male,i almost bleed to death from taking plavix and asprin combination ,it took 2 week for plavix to get out of me so they could operate,went to emory rehab in atlanta to rehab while waiting on surgery at northside hospital-i was sent by ambulance to get a ct scan at emory main hospital and the ambulance driver did not strap down wheel chair took off fast very fast flipped me upside down on my head and i was taken back to emory icu and next day they had to do emergency crainiotimy,,i have recovered and was doing good till ambulance ride but now i feel ive lost my self worth,not able to drive and work and shakes -tremmers and cant focus on simple task,its dec 7th and i hope i recover more over time.I thank GOD im alive and my wife got me help real quick or id be dead according to doctor...Blood was to thin.

This was a very good read….thank you so much….I'm a brain injury Survivor

My subdural hematoma was in 1/2004. I was paralyzed on my right side and deaf after my surgery. With physical healing and time both came back and everyone thought I was fine again. But I wasn't. College educated me didn't even know what 4 plus 2 was. Have had to reteach myself things I know I knew. And have had to come to terms with the fact that there are things in my life that prior to 2004 I will never remember. The physical and outward of me appear fine but that is only because of the struggle I go thru daily in my head.

To person who wrote in on 11-14-15 @ 7:11PM who is 32 now, sustaining TBI at 15, enjoyed your perspective. As I've written previously, TBI only improves as time goes by.  You understand the equation of sustenance. You've glommed on to the situation and understand the parameters. Nothing is given to you but nothing is taken. Working with what is at your disposal is the means to attaining a certain serenity. It is all there to be retrieved......................................patience rules the day, inner calmness guides oneself, it can be done for as one thing is taken, something else replaces the condition that is no more as result of TBI. You can and will gravitate toward the simplicity of finding the replacement by living each day as a new horizon an thus you will find on your doorstep an answer to all your seeming problems. Remember patience and perspective is the path that leads to higher grounds in the journey embarked on seventeen years ago. Personalize and ye shall attain what one seeks. Just right, just right, just right......................................what falls into your field of vision daily is to be learned from an accepted the same way TBI has been accepted. You are a warrior, a warrior with a mission laid out for you. You have truly accepted this fact and your journey is limitless. You possess the spirit of a warrior.......no more needs to be said. Go forth as one.......................................!!!AC

I am 32 years old now, and have lived with being a survivor of a TBI from the age of 15. Was a passenger in a car accident that left my 16 year old friend dead on the scene. Doctors told my parents not to expect me to live past 48 hours because the swelling was so bad. I woke up 10 days later unable to remember why I was there at the hospital. I had flash backs of what occurred, colors of objects incorrect and time frames mixed up. Went through therapies at the hospital for the next 20 days before being released. I couldnt even remember what 8x5 was. Math was my best subject at that time. I had to re-teach myself, by the help of others, so many skills. Today I do still live with some effects of this trauma. Spelling.. thank god for spell check... it is horrible, sometimes it doesn't even look like a word. Writing comprehension can be difficult, forgetfulness, withdrawal of social situations, difficult to find words at times.. and the worst is lack of energy. Thinking can leave me exhausted at times. It can be very difficult to live this way at times but we all must remember that we still are US and thing still can make US happy. If we need to write notes or ask for help it will do nothing more than improve these skills that we all find challenging. Its the only thing that has kept me from breaking at times. Those neurons will work again!!!! Best luck to everyone.

I suffer from a TBI. Can't find the the right words. Ringing in my ear's . it's like a electric current in my head. Waking up streaming.. No sense of smell.. Blurred vision bad since of direction and on top ptd.. On a positive iv taken my army experience to take me to Uni and becomes the best teacher I can be. That's one thing my TBI can't change..my choice's to be the best I can be...

Nov 18, 2007 i was in a car accident and almost 8 years later i am still having symptoms. I can no longer hold down a job, ive been on and off depression pills sense i was 15 ive made bad decisions within the time that it has occurred and the symptoms are worsening by months. I need help with figuring out with what i can do to get assistance by the state and help fixing my injury. My insurance is crappy and wont cover anything needed to be done. Any advice? 

After a severe subdural hematoma at age 15 my sense of self was lost. I struggled with remembering who I was. After years of looking for myself I decided to rebuild and move on. Like others have said, I was reincarnated. It was a chance for a new life. Some times I have insight into my old life; this can be warming or saddening, but I keep moving forward. I don't frequently speak of my struggle with finding words, my lack of control in holding back my tears, or my sadness because I've learned that I'm lucky to have been given another chance. I hope that others with TBI can find peace.

5/19/98 was the day my life changed ..... It's now October of 2015 .... 17 years later ... I was 18 when I had a bicycle accident that fractured my skull on the back right side leaving a hole in my skull that will never heal .... I do not recall my personality before but do remember everything just not the person I was. It's been an interesting ride since then due to some neck issues that cause me pain and nerve damage in my left arm that has left it some what numb and limited to a point, wasn't able to move it at all for months. I suffer from depression everyday but it is manageable without medication as long as I don't allow mind to drift. I have issues with seeing trails .... Meaning when cars or bright lights pass by me they blur or trail behind it. I do have anger issues that bother me since they flair up or come on suddenly, I never really used to let things bother me that were petty but it seems they all pile up like a hill I have to climb on occasions. I tend to be unemotional at times she it's needed I should be or overly when it's uncalled for which is odd to me when I think about it .... But who knows. I also have had other injuries that have risen due to other incidences through out the years, examples are L5 disc fracture and such. So now after everything I wonder what's next .... 

My sister had a TBI 8yrs ago. She fell down the stairs my father called me and told me to get on a plane as they were not sure she was going to live. I live in the USA she in England. She was in a coma for a month on a ventilator and had two major bleeds in her head followed by a stroke. She did not respond to pain and made no movement on her own it was an awful time. She progressed and was sent to a rehabilitation centre   where she learned to walk and relearn how to take care of herself. 1yr later a plate was made for her head as the loss of bone was huge about a third of her skull. She is not the same person she was no longer able to work lost her partner of many years as he could not adjust to the new person. She is verbally abusive gained a lot of weight which she obsessives about and suffers short term memory loss long term is very distorted. Panic attacks are frequent plus headaches. Jump ahead 5yrs and she started to have seizures they were able to control with medication. I skype here most days and try not to engage when she wants to fight. She is currently living alone (has a dog) but in the last three weeks or so her speech is getting very difficult for her to pronounce get out and stuttering. She made an appointment to see the doctor my other sister will go with her and I pray their is something that can be done to help. If the need arises I will return to England to care for her if she will let me. My parents live in another country and are aging she hates our father so and would refuse to go their. To all of you that have suffered this awful injury my heart goes out to you. One day at a time is all you can do maybe even one hour. I wish you all the best.     

Savere TBI at work January 2015. Fell off of garbage truck. Eleven days in ICU. Spent next two months in Atlanta at The Shepherd Center. Best place I could have ever gone to. Still having therapy where I live in Asheville NC. Nothing against them, but they are nothing compared to Shepherd. Still have vision, balance and cognitive disability. Nowhere near 100%, but thankful to still be here. Almost died in the accident. Having to take depression meds now. Doctors say that's not unusual for TBI patients. My life has been completely turned upside down from this. Just had to get it off my chest.

Stuck on 124 comments...? I've sent a few insightful writings recently...no one else writing? Hard to believe, but it is what it is, I assume. That's all...short and sweet, kind of like a tweet...!!!AC

  Head on collision on way to air port, Coma 3 weeks hospital 3 months life score 3   received a T.B.I 1994, and today I turned 44 and feeling not so good, just had another MRI scan last week showing old damage to the brain and a section with low signal.  I truly thought I had done the( unheard of) and fixed the brain , through  yoga ways,  salt water cleanses  ie major salt cleanses, kunjal,nettie, Trataka and resting with feet above my head for periods of time. Yes to look at I have done well on the out side.  Problem now is I am seen to be fine,  Not true, much better in sum ways. but head problems even tinnitus as well now, I find it very hard when others judge me.                                .(to sum up)

Practice yoga, especially breathing practices and  or low impact exercise as often as possible, drink lots of water and smile, I know this can be hard but give it a go and see for your self.    The right partner is good but much time is still needed on your own too  "Balance"  

On 11/15/01 I suffered a TBI due to a drunk driver vs. pedestrian accident. It is now 2015 and I still have some lasting effects from my TBI. For example, I find myself calling people the wrong name. I will go call out every name I know while I am looking at the persons whose attention I am trying to get. But, my family and friends have learned that this "word finding skill" problems is a small part of who I am now and they accept it. Also, my short term memory is not good at all. So, I find myself with a pen and paper or my phone to write or type things down. When I listen to people talk, I get confused because I  am concrete, but others are not. I have concluded that often people don't mean what they say which can be frustrating for me. My sense of smell and taste were restored. Because I go to church and regularly attend church functions, I am rarely lonely. God has continued to put people in my life who have worse memories than I do which helps me not feel sad about mine. I have learned to love the new me. I yon have one life. Whether or not I have a TBI is not important. What IS important is what I decide to do with the rest of my life. I intend to live my life with purpose. I find that when I get busy, I get happy. Even if you have a TBI, you can have a great life. You can decide to make yourself happy. Stay positive and keep busy.  

I was 12 y/o the 2nd yr in high school, a genius who went to high school at eleven y/o. I was attacked, beaten, and had my head and faced bashed into a wall. The only think I remember was waking up two months after in a hospital from a coma, amnesia for over a year, unaware of who i was or who my family were. I was told I had TBI.I am now 47 y/o raised my 28 y/o son, but life has never been the same, still living alone, anxiety disorders, phobias, and not able to have nay meaningful relationships. I suffered a lot of headaches, memory lapses, neck, back hand face pain, joint pain, neuropathy, mood swings, depression,to name a few.I am glad I found this site, and read all these comments, because I thought I was alone.I will never be the same, unable to pass any exams, but I am trying to live one day at a time, and hopefully can get some more counseling and help that will assist me w/ my journey.I still haven't told many people what have been though or going through , just pretend as if all is normal, b/c sometimes people can really judge you, so I hope there will be more help out there for people who going through this terrible ordeal..thanks everyone for allowing me to see that am not alone, and that God for giving me the strength to make it each day.

Wow people! I am so glad I came across this. 

I had a TBI in the early 90's. I was in my early 20's. I was jumped by 3 assailants and literally turned upside down they drove my head into the concrete. I was unconscious for I don't know how long. I remember waking up and people where looking at me like I had passed out drunk. I didn't remember at the time what happened but I remember feeling embarrassed and jumping up and running to the barracks (I was in the Navy. Hadn't been there a week and didn't know anyone). They woke me up the next day and sent me to medical where I was diagnosed with a concussion and had to be watch for awhile. I had trouble with forgetting, concentration, and ANGER, but had no idea that I was suffering any conditions associated with that injury due to the fact that things gradually got worse throughout the years and didn't realize until looking back in recent years. Married when I was 34 or 35 for 6-7 years (divorced 2013). Wife convinced me to quit my job of 18 years, which I was scared to do, but thought my job was creating all my problems. She went with me on a few Dr. appointments (asked one Dr. why I was so stupid. That shattered me). In 2011 I had surgery on right wrist and shoulder at the same time (I figured I wouldn't miss so much work that way). Well, that really screwed me up. I awoke into a panic attack in the recovery room. Anxiety, which I had never had, turned into panic attacks. I couldn't drive to work anymore (X and I had the same hours, so she started driving). I struggle almost daily with suicide because I can't figure out what when and why I can't figure out. I have been told by a Dr. that was doing an evaluation for social security administration that, while under anesthesia, I could have or it was comparitable to having a stroke and all those things that been in hiding had finally came to a head, or something like that. I am finally supposed to be going to the TBI clinic with the Veterans Administration but still waiting on the phone call. Still holding on to little hope and someday understanding. I relate to the friendship, romance, time, patience, and probably all the above. Very lonely and if my X didn't want to be patient, who will? I have never been abusive just frustrated

I'm 2.5 years post tbi after falling over 10 feet head first from a safari jeep. I lost my career as an executive, my husband and some friends who left me hospitalized alone in India. I keep thinking I will "recover" but it's true, you improve, not recover and it's a tough pill to swallow.  Fatigue and apathy, diagnosed as aboulia is the biggest frustration for me as well as chronic pain.  It makes it hard for me to relate to the person I was before and it's certainly what makes it hard on those who knew me. The old cliche that a crisis tells you who your true friends are is certainly true for anyone who is a Tbi survivor or loves one of us. 

Last e-mail sent wasn't put up for viewing. Likely because I got a bit personal and stated the married name of my sister. This post I will not name her, only describe her demented personality. She takes joy in the agony of her younger brother... a characteristic that is not a quality one would seek to acquire... a twin, fortunately, her other half makes up for her perverted self. Exact opposite... a rehab specialist, she balances the equation out. For every negative encountered on your way to restoring the self back from a TBI, there shall be a positive to balance out the equation... the story of life, balance!!! Equanimity reigns in the universe of the living... understand, no good, no bad, everything is an equation that results in a balance of zero when you reach the end of the line, death. To be out-of-balance is human... to make this life a zero sum game is divine. Seek and thee shall be... !!!

I suffered a TBI while serving in the USMC. This injury was inflicted by friendlys. no need to elaborate as this isn't the topic here. I suffer risiduals permanent in nature such as : headaches, memory loss,anxiety, balance ( I fall often) ,neurpathic effects,can't concentrate, can't converse w/O staying on a topic PTSD, social deficiency. Etc.I got it all.although some of these have improved a little all still exist. I don't know where and what I'd be today,but I am sure I wouldn't be where I am now. I just live my life and make the best of it I can.I'm proud of me for hanging in tough. And behind a Marine. An FYI ,This happened 28 years ago,and this took me 42 minutes to type.

I'm newly friends with a guy who has TBI. He can't do much on his own so we mostly communicate through text. He's approaching the 3 year mark soon.. I really hope he makes a full recovery but regardless I want to be his friend. Can anyone tell me about their process by the years?