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Columbia Personal Injury Lawyer > Blog > Car Accident > Car Accidents and Amnesia

Car Accidents and Amnesia


Unfortunately, one of the most common injuries suffered in a car accident is a traumatic brain injury (TBI). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that automobile crashes are the primary cause of TBIs that result in hospitalizations and deaths. Although there are many different types of TBIs, and many different symptoms, one of the most common among all brain injuries includes amnesia.

TBI and Amnesia

TBIs are very unpredictable, and every person’s injury will be unique to them, including their symptoms, treatment, and recovery. Due to the unpredictable nature of a TBI, there is no exact and established treatment plan in the medical community. Oftentimes, the physician’s discretion will determine how to effectively treat a TBI. Oftentimes, TBI symptoms do not appear until hours, days, or even weeks following a car crash. One of the most commonly seen injuries in TBI victims is some form of amnesia. Victims themselves may not even understand that they have amnesia, or are beginning to develop amnesia. Symptoms may present as very minor or subtle at first, and therefore can be challenging to treat. Amnesia, or any type of memory loss, can have a catastrophic effect on a victim’s life and livelihood, depending on its severity and if it is temporary or permanent.

Understanding Memory Loss and Amnesia

There are several different clinical types of memory loss or amnesia, all with differing degrees of severity and permanency.

  • Anterograde amnesia. Most victims of a car accident will experience this type of amnesia if they experience any memory loss at all. This amnesia is the type where a victim loses the ability to create memories or form memories for a short period of time following the automobile crash.
  • Post-traumatic amnesia. If a victim only has a bit of memory loss for only a short period of time after a car accident and is in a state of confusion, it is likely post-traumatic amnesia, which is typically not permanent.
  • Retrograde amnesia. If a victim of a car accident can not remember memories from before the car accident as well as after the car accident, it is called retrograde amnesia.

Amnesia and Memory Loss Symptoms

The chaos of a car accident can leave any victim traumatized. Many car accident victims have a difficult time cognitively immediately following a crash. However, if the victim of an automobile crash begins to have increased clouded thinking, the inability to remember memories either before or after the car accident, challenges concentrating, confusion, or the inability to organize thoughts could be indications of amnesia. Anyone suffering from these types of symptoms should seek immediate medical attention.

Let Us Help You Today

You may have the right to receive compensation if you were involved in a car accident and suffered from any type of traumatic brain injury due to someone else’s negligence. Contact an experienced Columbia personal injury attorney at The Stanley Law Group at 803-799-4700 to help you understand your legal rights and help you determine your next steps.




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