Anterior grade and retrograde amnesia (memory loss), are common after-effects of head injuries sustained in road accidents or construction site accidents (in particular falls from height), for example, but may also be the result of intense emotional stress during traumatic experiences or accidental injuries of any other kind.
Anterior grade amnesia after road traffic accidents
In cases of anterior grade amnesia, all events after the accident causing the personal injury are erased. This is partly due to injuries to complex parts of the brain upsetting the brain’s chemical balance and may mean the injured person remembers the traffic accident, but has no memory of what happened afterwards. Once this balance begins to return to normal and the brain’s systems begin to function again, memory also returns.
Retrograde amnesia following accidents on the road
The term retrograde amnesia describes loss of memory of events prior to the motoring accident. This may mean losing just a few seconds or minutes’ worth of memories, such as, for instance, an individual remembering a vehicle coming at them, but being unable to recall the actual impact. In some cases, hours, days, even months or years of life prior to the accidental injury are lost. As the victim recovers, long-term memories return, usually in fragments and in random order.
The combination of memory loss, confusion and poor judgement or reasoning skills; poor organisational skills and other psychological and physical effects of injuries to the brain’s temporal and/or frontal lobes can change an individual and his/her behaviour dramatically. This difficulty to understand and cope with change can put tremendous strain on family members, especially those directly involved in the care of the injured person. Siblings also often feel a sense of neglect while everybody is focused on providing care and support for the accident victim.
Coping with someone suffering from memory loss and other brain injury effects is made easier by accepting help from others and using resources like ‘Share the Care’, for example, to effectively share tasks and keep track of who is supposed to be doing what. This not only takes the strain off carers, but also allows making a little more time for siblings.
If another road user was responsible for the motoring accident causing the injury, it may be possible to claim for driver or passenger injury compensation, which will assist in coping with the financial aspect of dealing with an injury of this magnitude. Call Accident Advice Helpline for no win no fee* assistance.
Date Published: July 8, 2014
Author: Accident Advice